It turned into an over night deal. Or, should I say an ordeal?
My buddy Bill came up from Sihanoukville. He wanted to go to Chanthaburi. We were only going for the day, so both of us packed very lightly, knowing we would return to my home that evening.
We went through the border at Pailin / Prum.
Upon arriving at Immigration on the Thai side, the young lady there decides, for whatever reason(s), that she does not want to give us entry into the country, unless we are going to stay overnight. (I was honest and upfront, telling her we were going to Chanthaburi to shop, and would return to Cambodia later in the evening. She would have no part of this.
She made me agree that, if she granted us entry, that we would not attempt to return to Cambodia that night. (The border at that crossing is open from 06:00 to 22:00, daily.) We didn't have much of a choice, and we had come all the way so far. So, we agreed. (She was not exactly as nice as she could have been. I think she was having a bad day. Or, maybe she didn't like foreigners - or maybe it was just limited to Americans? Who knows?) Either way, I am not sure if that is a requirement, or if she just wanted to be difficult. Either way, she accomplished her goal.
What was worse, was the fact that we had a driver waiting for us on the Cambodian side of the border. We had to send him back to Battambang and have him return the following morning, to fetch us.
Anyway, after finally gaining successful entry into the country, we looked for a ride into Chanthaburi, some 80km away, according to a local driver. We found motorbikes to take us out to the highway (about 4kms), to catch a "taxi". (The "taxi" looked an awfully lot like baht bus. But, whatever. It worked.) The motors charged us 50THB; the taxi, 100THB.
After arriving in town, we booked a night at the Gems Club Hotel.
Long story short, neither of us found the items we were seeking. "Big and Tall" clothing simply was not to be found in Robinson's or Big C. So, aside from just going there to see what it was like, the trip was - basically, a wasted effort.
The next time I want to go shopping, I will just go to Bangkok.