California 2 Closed

Discussion in 'Cambodia - General Discussion Forum' started by LaudJohn, Jun 21, 2008.

  1. Hi All

    In case anyone is in Phnom Penh and looking for riding info from Jim at the California, I regret to inform you all that Jim Closed up shop on 5 May this year.

    The building was sold. Jim is relaxing for a while at the moment and probably intending to go on some rides.

    Jim and the Cafe California 2 will be sorely missed. It was my watering hole in PP (along with many expats) and Jim is a great source of info for people riding in Cambodia.

    Here's hoping that he finds a new place (if he still wants one);


  2. The best hotelier in town.

    Generous with his time & knowledge
    he will be sorely missed.

    Not known by many, he truly has a great photographic eye and
    has a wonderful archive of Cambodian photographs.

    His adventurous riding reports in
    make hair raising reading and are beyond extreme.

    You can still see some of his pix on his site -as well as advice
    as where to go now.

    Hoping that it won't be too long before the phoenix of California 3 is rising.

    Here's to you Jim - hope you are chilling out somewhere where the Surf's Up!
  3. Charlie Don't Surf!!

    Hope Jim gets back into business before the next dry season, really miss the friendly atmosphere on the river front. Used to be THE place to catch up with riding mates and have a cheap beer or ten.

    Has anyone got an update on Jims' plans or maybe Jim could let us know if he has a new place lined up.

    Never forget the sticker Jim had made up " Don't sit on my bike and I won't sit on your buffalo" or something like that, a good laugh. Also the famous post card of the little girl riding a buffalo thru a lake standing up on it's back.

    Miss a true riders den in PP.
  4. Your right about this photo Harrythefinn, its a classic, when friends in OZ would ask me whats Cambodia like, I would simply show them this postcard.

    I hope he reopens somewere soon.


  5. Since earlier this month, Jim...from CA2...has been working at Sharkys.
    Surely he'll be an added benefit to their management team and make a good bar even better!'s a story he wrote for Bayon Pearnik, appearing in this months edition, reminiscing after the closure of CA2:
  6. Its been ages since my appearance on this website. My apologies.

    I appreciate all the warm comments from the riding community, not only here but from all over the world. You all say I would be missed but it is you who are missed.

    Harry would roll in from Korat geared up and park his bike out front caked in mud. He would have to chip off a layer to get to his gear. Other riders doing regional tours would roll in on a variety of bikes and my local clientele would immediately stand up to check out the equipment and share road info.

    It was sad for me to begin my last ride from my home. It used to be get out of bed, roll into the shop, make sure the girls were squared away with everything they needed. I would then grab my gear from the office and start stacking about the bar on tables and counter tops why my partners shared coffee and conversation. Then it was load up and kiss the staff goodbye.

    We would complete the ride and return to California 2 to a welcoming committee. We would share the treasures we found with the staff and our local riding community. Our tourist visitors at the bar would be treated to a slide show as I would plug in my camera to the TV (but not before taking some personal treasures off the memory card).

    I am at Sharky and I intend to improve upon an already good thing.

    With impending closure of the business I squeezed all I could out of the business. I sacrificed riding for almost a year. I could feel the Cambodia I once knew slipping away as it succumbed to development. What a difference a year makes. I did at trip to Pattaya in Sept 07 and had to cross the ferries all the way to Koh Kong and on the way back from Koh Kong the journey took 7 hours as I waited in the pouring rain for the ferries to muster up enough people to make the crossing. Sept. 08 the bridges are in and its an easy 4.5 hours. I was happy to get to Issan and see the Khmer Temples scattered about Korat, Buriram and Surin. Now with more time available I hope to get to Sisaket as well.

    The trip took me to Pattaya, Korat, Surin and I crossed back at Anlong Veng. The road to Anlong Veng which was once a simple dirt road that cut through jungle is now a super highway. Cambodia is rapidly becoming Harley Country and the Jesters who long stayed away are now making appearances. It was nice to see Woody at Sharky last month.

    I am still up in the air as to if or when I will open another guesthouse. There are many aspects I miss and there are plenty I dont. If I do open again I will scale down and try to cater to regular clientele and weed out the ones that dont do well in third world countries. I would like to have a place for the riding community to congregate in the day time. There are places opening up, but lightning doesn't strike in the same place twice.

    I have left the California 2 website up as it provides good info and is a good central portal to the riding community in Cambodia. I will update it as well as the Sharky website and am still available to answer questions.

    [email [email protected]][email protected][/email]

    Again thanks to all for your past support.

  7. Jim
    Welcome back to the GT Rider forum - great to see you here again.
    Thanks for coming back.
  8. My apologies, its been long time overdue. It was good to get up to Issan for a change. I have a road trip posted in Novembers Bayon Pearnik and a few pics on my website. Great stuff. The people of Issan are great but lets not tell anyone!!

    I also see this site has had a face lift. Looks great.
  9. The full report on his trip through Korat, Surin, etc appeared in the Nov edition of Bayon Pearnik. The trip report is interesting, worthwhile, and can be found here:
    Once I sell my Djebel and get a DRZ I hope to follow the same path that appears in the report.

    Ack...I know that the Jesters have been coming to Snooky and PPenh since last year. With the increasing deluge of Harley's and their loud exhausts, it will just add one more sonic source to the already loud Khmer weddings and funerals 8)

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