Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - The Gecko: 04 October 1996

The Gecko: 04 October 1996

The Gecko: 04 October 1996

The mystery over how Vietnam War photographer Tim Page arrived in Phnom Penh remains

clouded in a tangled smokescreen of rumors and fuzzy excitement.

Page, who alleges he steamed up river to the capital on a North Korean submarine,

rented at a bargain price from an un-named third country, refuses to disclose where

he parked the tubular craft. And investigators who have scoured the waterfront in

search of the vessel have yet to uncover any hard evidence of its existence.

One naval expert asked to comment on the feasibility of a sub coming up the Mekong

noted that the waters were high enough so that it could, in fact, be possible.

A Western backpacker, whose fellow global explorers call "Like Wow" and

who said he hasn't been able to remember his real name since he left Kathmandu eight

months ago, reported sighting what is believed to have been a conning tower about

150 meters off the banks of the Tonle Sap in front of the Palace.

"Like wow, man! I saw this - like thing - like a smokestack - like sticking

out of the water, man, moving up river. And on top was - like this heavy dude - who

looked like - like Captain Nemo on the Nautilus, man," Wow gushed excitedly,

his jaw hung loose as he gazed fixedly into only-dreamed-of adventures which might

lay ahead.

"And then - like whooosh - it went under, man! And like that Nemo dude man,

he waved to me! Like that's a sign man. Wow, it was - like - reeealy heavy,"

added Wow, who was not available for further comment as his friend "Whoa Awesome"

dragged him away with the exhortation "Like Wow, man, let's go find that sub.

Maybe we can hitch a ride on it to Siem Reap! Whoooa awesome!"

Like Wow, Whoa Awesome and a third explorer named Yo Dude then raced north along

the riverfront in a cloud of dust, gesticulating wildly.

Wow's report could not be confirmed by reliable sources. Investigators and reporters

are still pursuing the case.

Page was last seen chuckling Buddha-like to himself as the inquiry proceeded full

speed ahead.

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