Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Siem Reap: Psar Chas

Siem Reap is a really small town.... a bit like Tangkak, but with lots more ang moh tourists. ;) Ok, here's a few fast facts about this place:
1. There's more than 1 million inhabitants in the Siem Reap province, or at least that's what I understand from the guy who was driving us around.
2. You don't need a license to ride a motorbike, BUT foreigners are not allowed to, although no one really bothers to follow this rule. ;)

Psar Cha or Old Market is where the action is. Here one can buy just about anything from fridge magnets to dried pig intestines and just about everything in between - except perhaps an iPod. That, you have to travel to Phnom Penh to get. hehehe

The central courtyard of the market is an open wet market where the local produce are sold fresh daily. The place reminds me of the famous Pasar in Kota Bahru with all its colours and hive of activity. Amazing!

One is spoilt for choice when it comes to local fruits. Bananas, dragon fruit, lime, oranges, pears... the list just goes on and on. And they were quite cheap too - for the local Cambodian that is. The moment a tourist opens his mouth to ask "How much?", the price automatically hikes up and it's all in US$!

There were sweet deserts for sale too, this one looks like glutinous rice balls doused in a dark sauce, perhaps palm sugar. Didn't dare to try it coz I didn't fancy spending the next five days in my hotel room recovering from food poisoning.

Speaking of poisoning.... care to try some barbecued spider?

Or would some crispy fried cockcraches be more to your liking? Come on, don't be shy...someone said they taste just like chicken. Yeah, right!

Back to more familiar fare: Live baby crabs waiting to be sent to the local restaurants. I have to admit, they do look a lot less attractive this way than when I was looking at them while scuba diving. I wonder why.

Shirley, my cousin insisted on starting her souvenir hunting season early. So she dragged us along to look at wooden sculptures of the Buddha, Apsara (female deity), elephants and nagas. I noticed that the quality of the items for sale here are pretty high, and not as expensive as Bangkok or Hanoi.

Silk purses that were definitely not made from a sow's ear. ;) Pretty aren't they?

The trick while shopping here is to bargain, bargain and then bargain some more. They expect you to. And then, walk away. I guarantee they will lower their price another dollar or two.

Wymen however was too busy chatting up these lovely girls to care if he was being ripped off. I think he paid like US$10 for a cap from the girl in blue.

As for me, I was busy trying out my new DSLR, the Canon EOS 400D and learning new trick and techniques. thanks Wymen for the tips. Appreciate it. Now go back and 'layan' the girls. They're waiting for you. ;)

1 comment:

sbanboy said...

Aiyak .. the cap was only 2 USD !!! hehehe