Third time lucky

Friday is present day. This week we have changed the rules a bit - presents will be a "surprise" from mummy and daddy. This avoids lost opportunities on other days of the week, last-minute rushed decisions, and basically the accumulation of useless plastic tat. Presents are still handed over on the completion of the 5th page of weekly homework, but Lucas decided it would be cool to do Friday's homework yesterday and so get his present hidden under his pillow at nighttime.

Finally managed to see the Grand Palace and Silver Pagoda, on our third attempt. A bit of a disappointment really. You can't go into the main palace building, so you are reduced to walking around the grounds (very nice, with European style gardens) and peeking through the windows. The guide said it was a bit of a copy of the one in Bangkok but we didn't think so at all.

The Silver Pagoda has silver floors... covered in carpeting (except for one little corner to "prove" you are walking on silver). There are a few more things to visit, royal elephant palanquins and such like, but all in all this visit didn't seem to feel like good value for money. Having said that I think it's about a third of the price of the one in Bangkok. Basically the Grand Palace in Bangkok is much more impressive in general, but the one in Phnom Penh has much nicer grounds.

But the kids didn't care. As long as we went to the massive playground next door they decided they would tolerate our wanderings for a couple of hours. The night market was also a hit - new clothes and for dinner... Angry Birds on a stick (processed fish protein plus food colouring).

Lesson learnt today: Vattanac bank doesn't charge us anything to take money out of their ATMs - up till now we have been paying $3-6 for each withdrawal; great to know on the last day in Cambodia.

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