Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - The Gecko: 27 August 1992

The Gecko: 27 August 1992

The Gecko: 27 August 1992

The Gecko heard his first weather advisory recently: Watch out for high seas on the

Tonle Sap-probably every afternoon, especially during the rainy season. The advice

was picked up from two intrepid journalists who were headed to Siem Reap on-what

else-the story of a lifetime. Alas, they missed the scoop but now have another tale

to tell.

After renting a boat at Kompong Chhnang the crack reporters and their three-man crew

were steaming serenely into the lake when a bit of a squall came up. Much to everyone's

surprise they soon found themselves facing an onslaught of rolling, five foot waves.

After a few too many breakers poured over the bow, the seafaring hacks might have

been muttering about "life jackets" as they stood knee-deep in Sap on a

shaky deck.

A quick glance in the cabin only added to their chagrin as water began gushing in

through the floor boards.

The trusty captain veered hard to port and chugged for the shore, but the Tonle Sap,

as the journos now know, doesn't offer pristine beaches along its sides. Deep marsh

grass is more the norm, the kind that extends as far as the eye can see, without

a tree to hang on in sight.

Luckily the craft didn't sink. With some feverish bailing and makeshift repairs the

hapless lot beat a hasty retreat back to home base.

The Gecko has caught wind of other hazards in the neighborhood. One of the Fokkers

that come and go at Pochentong had one of its wheels "fall through" the

tarmac. See, its the rainy season and some times the water carries away the sand


A European lass ran into a bind with the telephone folks. She paid $1,500 for a phone

line but when the man she paid the money to passed away suddenly, so did her application

for a phone. She's now back to square one, minus $1,500.

Back to the airport. It seems some of those areas along the runway where the grass

hasn't been cut are minefields. Be careful where you walk.

There are a few fake U.S. $100 notes circulating, although a market exists for them

if you get stuck with one. The Gecko's heard that they can be sold for $60 to brokers

who then re-sell them in Thailand for $80.

Speaking of currency, one visiting expert has reported sightings of "Khmer Rouge"

bills from more than a decade ago. Perhaps he could use a quick review of Cambodian


The grenade that exploded in the New Market is keeping shoppers on their toes. While

the Gecko has heard six different versions of what actually took place, the key question

is how many other shoppers are afoot with explosives in their pockets.

On the more mundane side of life in Phnom Penh, the Gecko reports that the Electricity

Authority has been issuing notices to foreign consumers that they will now have to

pay for the juice in dollars only. No explanation given for the switch.


  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group