Siem Reap Girl

Travellers say many things about Cambodia: the people are wonderful, the begging is extreme and that everything is super-cheap even by South East Asia standards. Spoiler: only one of these things is true!

I’m going to take you on a little journey, one that took us just over two weeks to cover from North to South Cambodia. From city living to island life, ‘bum guns’, insect munching, pimped up homes, a dark past and smiley prosperous future. Kicking off with the journey to Cambodia via Delhi and Bangkok and our Cambodian starting point, Siem Reap.

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As most travelling girls with restless souls will tell you, adventure is their first love. Unlocking our planet’s secrets, exploring every ocean and getting under the skin of the myriad of earth’s cultures is what makes my eyes sparkle. The joy of moving, living a nomadic lifestyle and home being wherever we lay our backpacks is the life we choose to live. It’s never lonely and much of the beauty is in the solo journey. I’m so grateful that I had that experience but what happens when you meet your soulmate and they share the same dreams, passion for travel and nomadic soul as you do. Magic happens that’s what!

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Only a few weeks ago (pre Brexit) I, like many, would have argued the UK is not racist or xenophobic. I’d have argued this with confidence. We are a welcoming multicultural society, aren’t we?! Yes, I was aware that there are pockets of society in the UK that are unhappy about immigration. But, did I think it was hate-fuelled and would result in personal attacks? No.

Of course I’ve spotted the front pages on the right-wing press and dismissed them in disgust. But dismiss them I did because I didn’t believe it was a reflection on our society. I was also naive to the damage they were doing. Not overtly racist but the premise was there, immigrants are to blame. Brexit appears to have provoked a crescendo of emotions within the UK, fuelled by the media. We’re Brits, we love to moan and we also pride ourselves on our freedom of speech. It’s great that we can voice our opinions but when does free speech become hate speech?

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