With Backpack

One World in One Lifetime

2017 A Flight Oddity

Posted by Heliocentrism on July 15, 2017

Thursday, May 18th, 2017


Mark and I flew out of Cambodia on an inexpensive Air Asia flight to Kuala Lumpur. There was a moment when I thought we would have had to stay another night in Siem Reap. When we were at the airport there, I saw a very weird looking guy walking around the airport. He wore a Rugrats t-shirts and, I think, a wig.

He walked up to the Dairy Queen counter and asked the price of their beer. Dairy Queen doesn’t serve beer, at least not at the Siem Reap Airport. He made a little scene where he over acted his astonishment at the lack of beer. He looked around to see what attention he got. Not many people noticed him, so he walked away to cause a disturbance else where.

Inwardly, I hoped he was not on my flight. He was not just a weirdo. He was an attention seeking weirdo. One that wasn’t getting the attention he craved. This could not lead to anything good. I had just become aware of the existence of this man and only after a few minutes I knew that trouble followed this guy wherever he went. At best, he was just some guy with mental or social problems. At worst, he was up to no good.

When we were on the plane and everyone was seated and ready to go, the flight attendants closed the door. We just sat there waiting. Then the door opened again. Walking down the aisle was an airport official wearing a reflective vest and talking into a walkie-talkie. Behind him was Mr. Rugrats. He walked down the aisle glowering at some passengers and giving goofy smiles to others.

The airport guy walked Mr. Rugrats to his seat and got him to sit down. Then the airport guy left. Once the official was off the plane Mr. Rugrats got up and walked to the back of the plane to speak with a flight attendant. I don’t know what Mr. Rugrats said, but it upset the flight attendant. He ask Mr. Rugrats to sit down. But every time he sat down, he would get up 2 minutes later to bother another flight attendant or glower at passengers.

Flight attendants walked Mr. Rugrats back to his seat several times. We had not even left the ground and already these hard working people were exhausted taking care of just was silly man in a Rugrats t-shirt. He just wouldn’t stay seated long enough for them to do their jobs.

Finally another official came and took Mr. Rugrats off the plane. There was a very normal acting man who Mr. Rugrats sat next to, the few seconds he actually sat down. He was Mr. Rugrat’s friend. He was given the option to stay on the plane or leave and help keep Mr. Rugrats calm. He left with his friend.

An attendant made an announcement to explain what happened. The 2 guys landed at the airport earlier in the day, but the government refused them entry to Cambodia. They had to go back to their country, Malaysia, and our flight was the last flight to Malaysia that day. Cambodia wanted Air Asia to take the 2 with them.

But, they did not fly in on Air Asia, and our pilot didn’t want to take responsibility for the one who was behaving oddly. He was willing to take them to Malaysia if, and only if, Cambodia provided 2 escorts to accompany the strange man. Cambodia did not or could not do that. So, our pilot refused to take Mr. Rugrats. Cambodia retaliated by refusing to give our plane clearance to take off or to allow anyone to get off the plane.

I don’t know how things got resolved. After an hour and a half stand-off, our plane left without either of the 2 guys. Who knows what happened to them.


Cambodia
(កម្ពុជា)
(Kampuchea)

How to get there:

  • You can enter Cambodia by bus, plane, train, or boat.
  • You will need visa to enter. You can get a visa at the border, get an e-visa, or go to the nearest Cambodian embassy or consulate and get a visa.
    • I got my visa at the border, so I don’t know what advantage an e-visa would give you.
    • The cost of a Cambodian visa at the border or at the airport is 34USD. I know all the websites say 30USD, but it’s actually 34USD.
      • It’s not a scam, because everyone pays 34USD. If it is a scam, it’s a very consistent one.

Phone:

  • Emergency Numbers:
    • Fire 118
    • Police 117
    • Medical Help 119

Websites:

Downloads:

Videos:

Books:

Notes:

  • The US dollar is the main, however unofficial, currency.
    • Only paper money; no coins.
    • When getting money from retailers as change, check the bills.
      • Return anything that looks suspicious and ask for a new better looking bill.
      • If you have a suspicious bill, you will be stuck with it. No one will take it from you.
      • Refuse to take anything with rips, writing, or stains.
      • Refuse to take anything that looks fake, even if it’s a one dollar bill.
  • The local currency, the Riel, is used mainly as change less than a dollar.
    • Pay for things in rial, is like paying for things in quarters.
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