Phnom Penh to Bavet, Cambodia
After a leisurely morning sipping a packet of my own Indonesian coffee on the hostel’s rooftop restaurant, I collected my laundry from a nearby shop that washed laundry, sold bus tickets and various other services. I found it surprising how the hostel wanted to charge twice the price as the real laundry store, yet it was located around the corner. I confirmed the bus pickup to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam then headed back to repack my bag.
With some free time, I walked around then talked to the hostel staff and was warned to be careful in Vietnam, which confirmed my sense that Cambodians hold an unusually strange antagonism for their neighbors. Nobody seemed to know that during the Vietnam-American war, the Vietnamese Army became fed up by Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge constant border skirmishes, that they invaded and toppled the regime, thus freeing the Cambodian people from a pretty insane anti-intellectual dictator.
The bus ride to Vietnam should have been simple with one bus transfer at the border crossing, but I was not able to cross because I made the mistake of renewing my passport after receiving the Vietnam visa, thus my passport numbers did not match. I had no problem when crossing from Thailand to Myanmar, so I didn’t expect any problems. Even worse, due to the King’s birthday and the extended holiday weekend, I would not be able to process a new request right away. A gentlemen offered to help and after testing and evaluating my options, I went with him to a nearby hotel to wait…
Thus I’m stranded in Bavet, Cambodia a small border town with a few random casinos and not much else. I was quite concerned for mosquitoes buzzing throughout my room so I pulled out my compact mosquito net and made a makeshift canopy.
When acquiring Visas make sure to check each country’s immigration website. Most require the Visa’s information to match the current passport, especially passport number. However, there are some Visa’s such as the 10-year Chinese and Indian multiple entry tourist visa’s, which remain valid on an old passport after a passport renewal.