Winter is here!
Mere 20 degrees and my a/c pony finally gets some rest. Hot shower is a must and the bathroom door remains firmly shut to eliminate any kind of breeze; my skin prickles nonetheless. Mornings arrive crisp and clear with a hint of smoke in the air. My neighbours with obsessive compulsive sweeping disorder have to work harder than usual to keep their front yard leaf free.
My floor tiles are cold. Even mid-day breeze is refreshing and I finally remember the sensation of shoes on my feet again.
Cycling all day produces almost no sweat – an unknown phenomenon.
The sky is deep blue and the air is dry. My hair doesn’t know frizz anymore.
I make myself a hot chocolate and put socks on as the evening draws near.
The bats fly over in the remaining traces of red and stars come out one by one, bright as little diamonds on dark blue velvet.
The air is fragrant and cicadas are singing their evening song.
The winter is finally here. I am absorbing every cool moment of it and enjoying it while it lasts!
Skies just about to burst, view from my balcony, Siem Reap
It’s the same every year….
We choke on dust for 6 months literally gagging for some moisture sent from the sky. We beg the weather Gods to send us some rain. We bake in the oven aka Siem Reap and by April we are growling sweaty mess suffering the mango madness.
Then it comes, out of nowhere it seems. Heavens open and we are swimming, yet somehow Siem Reap still manages to be dusty. Beats me.
With the wet season I am entering a new era of identity. I ditch all my white tops purely for safety reasons - and I am not talking only about dirt! Black is the new black and that’s my rule. Splash of colour is provided by the ever so necessary scarf which is also a dust buster and I will not leave my house without it. I can safely retire my hair straighteners and look frantically for frizz fighting products on the supermarket shelves. Not much luck there as I try to manage my hair with mind of its own into a semi presentable head of curls. Note to self: try harder or shave it.
We talk about the rain. We talk about if, how or when it’s going to rain. We even have a bet how long before the rain. We watch the sky with respect and wait for the rain. It comes, as a general rule, during lunch break or just before knock off time which makes me reach for lesser used and not so flattering words. I also reach for my blue plastic rain coat, made of durable substance the smell of which takes me back to childhood, blow up pools and balloons. Cycling in the rain, looking like a giant condom, is great fun. You end up wet either way – inside out, as my blue plastic raincoat encourages sweating.
Breathability = 0.
This time I am not getting drenched, I sit in the safety of a restaurant with a clear view of the street, watching nature unleash its force. Rows of colourful “condoms”on bicycles amuse me. Today we have strawberry, banana and blueberry flavor battling the head wind and lashes of horizontal rain in a true rainbow fashion. God, there must be about 15 of them, I imagine all the tour members, minus their hats and flags, anxious not to be separated, so regardless of the weather they battle and pedal on. I am smart and have a beer instead. I can happily live without a TV.
The rainy season brings emerald green back to life. All shades of it. Cappuccino coloured lands transform almost overnight into patches of green, rice shoots promising a new rich harvest and cows are happily roaming and chewing. This time of year is lovely and very photogenic, despite the mud that comes with it. You must let Cambodia get under your skin. Ironically, in the middle of the rainy season, when you return from a day in the country and want to wash Cambodia off your skin,there is no water coming out of the tap. This, again, makes my vocabulary flare up as I use the more peppery expressions.
anna bella betts
Never still, always on the move, looking for the perfect capture... Cambodia is currently my home, presenting endless opportunities....
In this blog you will find no profound wisdom.
Just accounts of daily life, sometimes about photography, often about wine, occasionally about travel adventures and sometimes about nothing at all.