A lot happened today so going to walk you through it. Agreed to meet with my bike mule at 8am this morning and he never showed. Some guy at restaurant said to leave the key with him and he would pass it on, needless to say my anxiety started early. Took a nice boat ride from the island while constantly thinking about the guy at the restaurant taking the bike to his house laughing at the ding-dong who passed him the keys to a $2,000 bike. Once we got to the mainland bus station we met two nice Danish girls who where quick to give their opinions on my decision, they were not positive (anxiety continuing to grow). We got stuck at the border for 2 hrs while visas were being processed which meant I was 2hrs behind schedule to meet my mule. Once across the border we agreed to meet in the first town at his brother’s guesthouse, if I were delayed then he would just leave it with him and head back to Laos. Arrived a solid 2.5hrs late assuming that the bike would be waiting for me and went up to the reception and let them know that I was there to pick up my bike. The man says “what bike?” and my anxiety is now through the roof. Tried calling the mule and no answer…after 20min he finally answers and says he’s delayed due to rain, which was strange because I didn’t see a single rain cloud the whole way. Maybe it was a jungle storm…anyway he said he would arrive in 15min, 45min later and all too certain I should just get a bus ticket to Phnom Penh he actually showed.
The fun didn’t stop there unfortunately. Was making good time for being so late but the sun was sinking and some serious monsoon clouds were making their way across Cambodia. We of course got caught in the storm and sought shelter at some local farmers house. Strom was legit so we ended up there until the sun was gone and that’s when we noticed Beatrice’s headlight light was out…(named the bike Beatrice which means the one who makes me happy in Latin, or I just named her Beatrice so I could call her my beautiful B…). Anyway within seconds there was 10 Cambodians taking the light apart but the bulb was out and we were in the middle of nowhere so changing it wasn’t an option. They gave me the option of sleeping in their shop but I think I discovered 3 new insect species so again not an option. So I decided I would wait for a car to come by and follow it until I hit a town to get a room in. Had no idea that town was over 100k away… So I think before I mentioned Cambodian roads being pretty good, and I might still agree with that if it had been daylight out and not pissing with rain but it was so… Had to drive with the turn signal on for a few klicks so I could see something until a car came along I could follow. Found the best way to follow this guy was to stay on his ass but in the opposite lane. That was actually hard to do because I think he was trying to shake me. He failed but ripping at close to 100kph while getting rocks, bugs, rain drops, and dirt in your eyes make it a decent challenge. Im still digging insect guts out of my eyes by the way. After a few close calls we finally found a guesthouse. Place is ok actually but I did get nervous when the restaurant recommendation they gave us could only produce fried crickets. Was hungry but not that hungry. Found a nice Cambodian lady selling fried rice so all is well. Ready to make the last push towards the defender tomorrow. Can’t wait to say the least.