After sometime at the fruit seller and feeling comfortable with Mao, as he was polite and humble, i decided to ask him to take me for a tour of the city on his Tuk Tuk. He seems like an honest man and i was very impressed he could speak English quite well. He would guide me with the history, showing me all the important buildings in the city, even the history of each hotel. He would stop where ever i need to stop and even made recommmendations where necessary. It was short and quick tour but i had fun and learned so many things about Siem Reap . It was so interesting that i made a deal to engage him again later in the afternoon.
Siem Reap is not a big city , tourists prefer to walk and explore by foot. There are plenty of Tuk Tuk around so sometimes it is not easy for these drivers to get customers and life can be though. Mr Mao lives with his wife and 2 small kids and he is renting only a room. He works more than 12 hours a day.
He gets more during the peak tourist seasons which is from October till May and hardly survives during the low season. He strives to improve his English as he knows it's important for the tourist industry.
After engaging him for a few times , i trust Mao & i plan to engage him every time i am in the city. If i have more than 4 people which is the maximum a Tuk Tuk can take, he will get a friend to drive for me as well. Tuk Tuk are very cheap and you don't have to bargain actually but check out the standard rates with the hotel before you take one. Don't forget to get a card or brochure of your hotel , just in case you forget the address and you will not be cheated.
Now i look forward to see Mao in December. We stay connected via emails....see, Tuk Tuk driver also "canggih" . He is so sweet, even if its not time for me to visit Siem Reap, he will drop a line and say hello and always wish me & family good health. I feel so blessed to have found an honest, simple & humble man.
Mana mana ASk Pipah!