Cycling for Change
On Wednesday, 04 January, 2012, I went to buy a bicycle for my sport’s and physical exercise‘s purposes. I was accompanied by Mr. Chea Chhuon, a CEDAC staff, who is very knowledgeable in this aspect. He, himself, is passionate about cycling and his bike costs around 700 U$. I was expecting to spend around 300 U$ for my bike. To my surprise, these professional bikes cost a lot more than previously thought. It starts from 300 U$ up to 20,000 U$. The good one ranges from 500 to 2,500 U$. We spent time to visit different bike shops around the Central Market. I did not also expect that there are so many bike shops and it seems that they have good business. In this regards, it would show as one of the indicators, that more and more people are looking back to bicycle as means to maintain good health and using it during leisure time.
We ended up in buying a bicycle imported from a firm named GIANT, Taiwan. It costs all in all 497 U$. I liked it very much and have been since then cycling across Phnom Penh, in the early morning hours. If I could not do it the morning, I would compensate by riding in the late afternoon, after work. This morning, it was my day 31 of week 6 of cycling for physical strength, which I always enjoy doing it. I, normally, start my program by cycling from home to the overpass # 2 (Skybridge), then Teuk Thla, return to the park in front of the Ministry of Defense and Peace Palace (circling around several round trips) before heading back through the Russian Federation Bldv. to reach the compound of the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP). It is a large compound and is quiet in the morning, with comfortable and fresh air. I admire the architects, who designed the RUPP, its building and its surroundings. It is huge, environmentally sound and lovely at the same time. My riding time there is usually around 20-30 minutes inside, before heading back home.
I do enjoy also observing the morning life of Cambodians very much. Some time, if I woke up quite early, I ride to the riverside, Royal Palace, Hun Sen Park, Norodom Bldv. or to Chom Chao (12 Km one way from city center) and back. I have observed that more and more people are doing exercise of different types and could only recommend that other should make time to do it. Still, sport is one of the effective, preventive medicines on earth. In 2011, except spending money for blood tests, I did not have to spend for medical care.
By the way, it is also nice to experience Phnom Penh’s life in the early morning. In front of a Casino, one can see that many taxis and local ” Remorks” were waiting for customers coming out (most of the time with loser face) and young people (in pair) hanging around. For some people, the night life is just over, while for some the hard daily life is starting.