Moving to the country

Got to the new hotel early in the afternoon and it's a cracker. It is a sort of eco-lodge with bungalows dotted around a lovely common area which is in fact kid-heaven. There is a sea-saw, a slide, a hut, a sandpit, volleyball, a games area, boules... There are two jetties, eating huts just off the river, kayaks and bicycles. The river is perfectly safe and just of the jetties it is deep enough for kids (and adults) to jump off.

That is all through Esther and the kids eyes. For me, give me hot water taps and aircon any day. But I'll survive. If I can do camping I can do this. I would normally be fine with all this (I actually enjoy camping), it's just the extra hassle with the children that gets on my nerves: Aisha's hot milk, getting them to sleep in a mosquito net, having the room far from the main area when you have forgotten a toy, having the hotel far from shops and restaurants... And the rat I saw in the room didn't help.

Some friends of us in Madrid have some friends living in Cambodia. We had been trying to contact them for ages and just yesterday got a reply - Esther's mails had ended up in the spam folder and had only just been discovered. They live in Phnom Penh and it was a shame we just missed them. Today Esther was talking to a Spanish guy who is at the hotel and the more they talked, the more things clicked. Turns out him and his wife were these friends! So finally we did get to see them. They have a small boy who Lucas got on really well with. Showed them off on Skype to our mates in Madrid, after the usual banter about Angry Birds.

This lodge is so huge and self contained (and far from anything else) that you just want to spend the entire day here. Tomorrow we will try to be a bit more active. So far we did book an extra night.

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