My trip to Vietnam was eye opening for me. I had always shunned the idea of going on a group tour with a bunch of strangers. This could have stemmed from the difficult experience I had on a bus trip to climb Mt. Fuji more than twenty years ago. It could also be part of my general shyness. I don’t know. It wasn’t the first trip I took as a single/divorced person, but it kind of was. I went somewhere completely new and I wondered how it would work out.
As I wrote long ago, or so it seems, it worked out great. I immediately set my sights on somewhere else I could go on the bike. I thought about Chile. I thought about Sri Lanka. I thought about Cambodia (which starts in Thailand, cycles through Cambodia, and ends with a tour of the Mekong Delta in Vietnam–but since we’re going to Ankor Wat, I will refer to it as the Cambodia trip). All of these trips are cycling trips and were offered through the same company.
Then along came a little arterial block which made walking hell for the entire summer. The diagnosis took quite a while, but treatment options (surgery) sounded like it would be routine and I would be back on the pedals in no time. So, I put off making a decision.
The surgery did not work, and the next best option is continued exercise to build collateral arteries, and hopefully improved blood flow.
I have up my exercise regime and even took my bike out for a spin on a cold fall afternoon. I found that, surprisingly, cycling is easier than walking. I can cycle for more than 30 minutes non-stop (no coasting) before feeling the pain that walking can give me in hundreds of metres.
So, in a nutshell, I have decided to go on my vacation to Cambodia. Chile and Sri Lanka were both rated as more difficult than Cambodia. Perhaps if I had been training all summer, they would have been within reach–maybe next year or the year after.
Luckily for me, one of the people from the Vietnam trip is also taking this Cambodian trip, so I will at least know one person.
I thought about giving the whole thing a miss this year, but I decided against it. Maybe it is that whole, you only live once idea (YOLO), or maybe I know I would regret not using my time off doing something more interesting than shovelling snow and watching pre-Christmas movies on TV.
As a result, I have promised myself to be on the stationary bike every day (so far so good), improve the food I consume (so far not so good). I am not going to make up for a lost summer in the short period of time I have left, but I have to do what I can. My goals are modest. Don’t ride in the van too much and enjoy myself.
Thanks to my waiting until late, my preparations are running a bit late. I have done little to no research. I have a lot to get ready. The only good thing I can say is that I have learned some important lessons from the last trip which I will try to put into practice for this trip. I have applied for the appropriate visas and I am looking into flights.
Of course, I will be blogging about my preparations for the trip and on the trip itself. Last time, I used the phrase “getting ready pho my trip.” This time, I really don’t have a catchy phrase. If you have one, please let me know.
I had originally intended to call this post Holiday in Cambodia and use an image of the Dead Kennedys–but upon sombre reflection that just seemed…I will use the word wrong.