The Writer

We love Siem Reap and especially our hotel, the FCC Angkor. You can stay much more luxuriously here in Siem Reap, but not necessarily nicer. The FCC has a wonderful modern charm with a beautiful pool and an exceptional happy hour. Happy hour is from 5-7 for half price drinks which translates to $2 gin and tonics. Yes, another one please! It’s not perfect, the TV is tiny and looks like a computer monitor and the windows in the rooms are floor to ceiling so you need to keep your curtains closed for privacy, but other than that, it’s quite wonderful.

Our room was called Chamomile which reminded us of Tucson. When we first moved to 10th street, our neighbor Gretchen had a cat named Chamomile. He was always coming over to visit. We nicknamed him Ham-omile, because he always came to our home for his second breakfast. Our room was on the second floor for a little more privacy. Not every room was occupied, but the room directly across from us was. After a couple of days we became more and more intrigued with our neighbor. He seemed to work all of the time at his desk. Day and night. No matter how early we left for the temples or how late we came home from dinner, he was still at work. Sometimes in the afternoon he would lazily lounge outside on his patio and smoke a cigarette. The romantic in me decided he must be a writer. What stories was he telling holed up here in Siem Reap with a drink in hand? Did he live at the hotel. Like Hemingway in Key West? Or the male version of Elizabeth Gilbert and a Cambodian version of Eat Pray Love?

It turns out it was neither. On the third day Francois asked him if he was a writer. It turns out that he is a day trader and working all of the markets. His name is Terry, from the UK. His wife died 12 years ago. He sold his home and business and has traveled ever since. He laughed when Francois told him our theory. He said he has many stories to tell. Maybe he will write them after all.