T HE Gecko hears that Hun Sen's bodyguard, who is renowned for being perhaps
the largest Cambodian on the face of the earth, had a bit of a run in of late
with some of the Palace's North Korean guards that he used to spar with to brush
up on his Taekwando skills. Apparently, after one such friendly bout he injured
his back and was on the shelf for several months recovering from a few too many
crunched muscles. Now back on his feet, he has taken a novel approach to tune up
for additional chop-ups with the world famous boys from Pyongyang by hiring a
martial arts tutor from Seoul.
For anyone who thought that the nation
was having difficulty integrating into the international free market economy it
may be time to think again. A resident bartender who had his house burgled last
year was more than a bit dismayed to discover three months later that one of the
blank checks stolen from his checkbook during the break-in surfaced in
Manchester, UK when somone tried to cash it for 7,200 pounds. If it weren't for
an insufficient balance, it's likely that the check made out to some
fly-by-night British company would have sailed through the till like a
Another check story comes from a travel agent in town who was
informed with a smile that any payments for flights to Siem Reap had to be paid
by writing two. With more than a bit of a puzzled look the agent queried "Two
checks? For one ticket?" "Oh yes," came the reply. "One check for the Antonov
and one for the ATR-72. They both have very deep pockets."
hears that a senior Khmer Rouge general was in town recently. Nothing official
of course. He came in to visit his brother. How did he manage to cross the front
lines? Simple. He booked a flight from Bangkok and came through Pochentong with
a Thai passport.
If you think buying a generator will solve your power
problems, you may need to think again. One entrepreneur fed up with bills that
were "not quite consistent" with actual usage bought a 100KVA unit and then
started selling surplus juice to his neighbors. The local cabine operator showed
up in a flash and complained about unfair competition. After a bit of haggling a
deal was struck so that the businessman now subcontracts his power to the cabine
man who then re-sells it to the surrounding neighborhood. Is everyone happy?
You'll know the deal has gone awry if the lights go out around the Olympic
Word from Battambang is that the Khmer Rouge have come up with a
new taxation system. Traders who cross the front lines have been told that they
must now pay the price to do so in ammunition. They in turn go the provincial
militia and offer to sell a chicken or two for some bullets. The troops who
haven't seen a paymaster in too long readily agree, the deal is done, and then
the guys report to their bosses that they fired their ammo at the KR but missed,
with a request - please - for more.