Chilly day at Ocean Beach in San Diego. But its the beautuful ocean!!
Its a long story. I have to reread my blog to figure out where I left off!!
Well I did leave Siem Reap. I really really loved Siem Reap. But the medical facilities were one really nice hospital to one government hospital that wanted family to feed the patient.
So good bye to the wonderful Khmer friends and the the great ex-pat friends.
Off to Thailand. Bang sa ray outside Pattaya. Thought I would spend Christmas with my friend Leon and his friend Nan. And possibly visit the American in Rayong, about an hour or so from Pattaya.
First, the trip to Thailand was a nightmare. Taxi to border with suitcases. Perfect crosss border, get I taxi in Thailand with suitcases transferred and on my way to Pattaya. Wrong!! Immigration had other ideas. Seems theres a little law about only allowing two land crossings a year. I had my two. One bringing the American who overstayed his visa by seven days. So when he went to bank to pick up his money wire from his son they said no no. You in fact have an expired visa. Not good. No visa. No money. His social security that by some convoluted way gets to his son who wires it to a bank in Cambodia. I go to the ATM.
So I went on a two and a half hour drive to the border to show Mr American how to get his visa. Nightmare. Do not go to Poi Pet border crossing if at all possible. Its crowded. Its confusing. And there are travel agents trying to “help” you get your visa. They are not. They want your money. They grabbed us two falangs “westerners” before we understood what they were up to. They said here are two older travelers that we can con. My American guy could barely walk. It was a long two hours going thru immigration from Cambodia to Thailand and then back again. And they dont take dollars in Thailand like they do in Cambodia. So I had to get money from my account because The American didnt have debit card!! We did make it after we lost the agents. Paid someone $10 to run ahead and get passport stamped. Well worth it! Then the 2+ hour drive back. At least the taxi was there waiting for us. Well worth $40 for a round trip. The only problem was it was election weekend and it was Friday. Parades and traffic backed up. But we had no choice. Or he had no choice. Overstay is $10 a day. It already cost him $70. and they might throw you out. What it cost me was one of my two land trips. The second was taking him over the border in the ambulance to the hospital in Surin, Thailand. Which I didnt know. Not good. When I arrived at the border to take bus to Pattaya, Thailand. Immigration wouldnt let me go!!