over Angkor, the first volume of His Majesty the King Father Norodom Sihanouk's memoirs
- published in English and translated from the original French-language Le Calice
jusqu'a la Lie (The Cup to the Dregs) - will be available in Monument Books in the
next few days. All designed, laid out and printed in Cambodia, no less.
** Could the senior management of Mobitel please - oh dear God, please! - issue some
kind of statement explaining the on-going difficulties that mobile telephone customers
are having in making calls. Complaints continue from non-012 users trying to call
into the 012 system. However, now there are even disgruntled customers moaning about
problems in making calls from 012 to 012 numbers.
There are no doubt perfectly logical reasons for these trifling irregularities. The
problem is that the customers just don't know what they are and so are left free
to speculate wildly.
There are some folks out there in the general public who are pretty ticked off, and
we all know what the March and April heat can do to otherwise reasonable discourse.
** Some tourists have reported that the Vietnamese Embassy is now issuing 30-day
tourist visas in ONLY 5 MINUTES! There's no word yet on whether Myanmar will try
to beat that as it prepares to take over the chairmanship of ASEAN next year.
** A Cadillac pickup truck has been sighted in Sihanoukville. The whole point of
the vehicle has yet to be determined.
** There are divergent reports on the results of the Private Sector Forum that took
place last week. One participant described its success in terms equivalent to heaven
and earth moving in unison. Another participant is still wondering if somebody needs
to run for cover.
** Normally reliable and informed sources say that former British Ambassador Steve
Bridges is back in town cooling his heels before his departure to Bangladesh.
Hi Steve, how's it going? Let's do lunch when you get to the Mekong.
** There's a Khmer-language expression picked up on the grapevine that deals with
some of the more pragmatic aspects of current economic and trade policy. When translated
into English it goes roughly as follows:
Large trees are exported, toothpicks are imported;
Rubber is exported, Number One condoms are imported;
Paddy rice is exported, hookers are imported.
** Construction of the new US embassy near Wat Phnom is proceeding apace and is expected
to be officially opened in 2006. Unofficially, it already has a nickname: Fort Knox.