Ollie's Asia Adventure travel blog

30 Oct Siem Reap/Bangkok

Today we went on an ox cart ride before going to the airport for our plane ride to Thailand. Went to a village where we were met by a long line of ox carts. Each of us got into an ox cart and we were then taken to the driver's home where we were able to meet their families and look around where they lived. One of the men in our group went to the same home I was so we were able to see the same home and then were taken down the road where another family had a pig and duck farm. Also saw some of the villagers fishing with a net in a nearby stream. We were lucky as our driver spoke excellent English. He had a brother and his two children living in the same home which he introduced us to. In his home he had a small Sony TV which seem each family has no matter how poor they are. Even though they don't have electricity they use car batteries to power them. We then went to an artisan handicraft school where disabled kids 13 to 21 years old are taught different crafts. They then go back to their villages and use these skills to make money. It seems they have several of these schools located in different cities in the country. We saw deaf and crippled kids making stone carving, lacquered crafts and metal figures which they sell in a store on the property. We then flew to Thailand where I was able to go with our guide and the woman who had injured her leg earlier in our trip to have her leg redressed at a hospital. She has been having it redressed daily at hospitals wherever we are. You should see this hospital, when we pulled up in our taxi we were met by a man in a white uniform who opened our car door and then opened the door of the hospital all the while smiling and bowing. Inside a very clean updated hospital is an information desk if you don't know where you need to go and a sign-in desk with a nurse who took the information. Saw different doors leading to specialty sections. There is also a coffee cafe where you can get free tea,coffee and rolls. We were then taken to the emergency room where a nurse took off the dressing and then a doctor came in to get the women's history and to check her wound. Very efficient. A nurse then redressed the wound and we waited in the lobby where they then called her to pay the bill. It depends on what type of doctor you need to see as to where they process you they all spoke very good English. After the hospital we were supposed to return to the hotel and meet the rest of our group and then to go on a barge ride down the river. Traffic was so bad that our guide called the hotel and told our group to go ahead and take the bus and that we would meet then at the barge. It took us 1 hour to get to the barge and it took the bus another half hour before they were able to get there. By this time everyone was tired and only wanted to sleep, but we did have a great meal on the barge and then had a special ceremony that our guide had arranged where we all lit candles that were stuck in a lotus flower and then after saying our own prayer we released them to float down the river. After getting back to the hotel at 9:30 p.m., myself and 6 others had to get up at 2a.m. so we could arrive at the airport by 4a.m. The rest of the group is going on the extension trip which is going to see Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai,Thailand.

31 Oct Bangkok/Return to U.S.

I paid extra for this air portion to get a roomier seat, as I did not want to be stuck with no room to move like on the trip over. I was glad I had, as it's a 6 hour ride to Tokyo,Japan and then another 9 1/2 hours from Japan to LAX. I had one of the 2 men that were on my tour on the same plane with me on the 1st portion of the trip, and then one of the men on the last portion of the ride. We did not sit together but we did see each other at the airport and on the plane. Got into Medford at 3p.m. and then picked up my car at my niece's house where I had left it. Was sure glad to be home even though the trip was wonderful. Well folks this is the end of my e-mails hope you enjoyed the trip updates as much as I enjoyed telling you about it.

Love to all, Ollie

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