Sunday, July 15, 2007

The day of rest; pretty much my fav.

So for all of you interested, I did get a backpack yesterday for 18$. I'm pretty excited because it probably would've been 60 in the US. It'll fit all my luggage in there quite nicely and I can take it to college and any other trips I may have in the future. (:

Today has been a rather peaceful day. We got directions to the only branch here in Siem Reap and after a little wandering, found it along a dirt road near the main street. I'd have to say that my favorite activities so far in Cambodia have been attending church. It's such a comfort to me, to meet with others who have the same beliefs even though they live across the other side of the world! The members here are so kind and hopeful. We were talking with the senior Sister Missionary about how the recent history in Cambodia must have been so trying for everyone here, but the members have found a hope in a church completely separate from their ancestors' Bhuddist practices. It's really been an amazing spiritual experience to see the works of Christ progress and reach His children here in the little branch of Siem Reap, Cambodia.

So we've got plans to eat with the senior missionary couple at a pizza place this Thursday, but Tonya and I may go and drop in on the English class they teach at the church building on Tuesday. I'm excited to see how they teach English out here with not a bit of Cambodian tongue in them. The senior couple's actually from Alabama, so I can't imagine how their accent must sound and make things convoluted here with the natives. (:

Other than that, not much is going on here right now. We're still trying to reach the NGO company Tonya's working with. Communications has been a little mismatched and we're still not exactly sure what we're doing tomorrow, but hopefully we will have something to do!

So how about I let you all go off and live your 14-hour-behind schedules while I maybe go and take a Sunday nap? I love all of you and hope you're doing well and I'll be back again soon!


PS- I'm sorry there aren't any pictures, but posting them just takes too darn long, so I'll put some up later, I promise!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Here I am in Cambodia, and what do I have to show for it?

Well, to the imploring of my mother, I have created a blog for any curious to see how my adventures are going here in Cambodia. So far, I have ridden a bamboo platform- similar to Thunder Mountain at Disneyland, but without the safe assurance that you'll get off in one piece. (Don't worry, I'm still here)- tried several different types of curry (I know, crazy!), encountered two jumping spiders, two handwidth tree spiders, a tuk-tuk driver named Happy, and over 20 different temples. I've had a rather busy week.

Yesterday, after going to a somewhat decaying cultural village for Cambodian tourists, I was feeling pretty sick. I'm not sure if it was something I ate, but that's usually the case, isn't it? So, I was a little under the weather for the day, but getting a massage didn't hurt a bit. I've never gotten a full body massage before, but when they told me to lie down on my back, I got a little worried. Though the mesuse was very good at keeping my clothes from rolling up, she got dangerously close to the meeting of my two legs, and my pelvis just isn't used to traditional Khmer-style fist slappings going all around it. Luckily, she skipped the torso and went straight to the shoulders. I don't know how one can comfortable have one's stomach massaged, but I'm glad I didn't have to find out. Then I turned over and got my first butt massage! I figured, Jamie would love this! Though I myself couldn't stop tensing up until she moved up to my back. All in all, it was a very relaxing experience, but also a very... different one as well.
giong down right now

Also, I'm rather concerned about the number of bug bites I've collected. One on my foot, one on my left leg, five on my right leg, two on my right arm and one on my right hand. It wouldn't be so horrible if the darn things didn't swell up so big! Both massages I got probably raised a bit of concern in the mesuses massaging my legs thinking, I hope that's not contagious! They're going down right now, but the colors have changed from red to purple and a couple are a bit bumpy. Not to make you sick or anything, but just to paint you a picture of how my skin reacts to heat, humidity and mosquitos. Ah well, c'est la vie. Besides itching like mad, I'm rather quite well, so I'm not bothered too much at all.

Currently, I am enjoying the Cambodian culture of Americanization as I sit under a fan in an air-conditioned, maud cafe called The Blue Pumpkin. Their ice cream is superb and the couches look very tempting to curl up on and go to sleep. I must say I enjoy this room much more than our cricket-covered room. Coincidently, I found three giant crickets in my bag, today. I'll bet they're just relishing in my incredible fashion sense of wrinkled, shorts and oversized shirts. Though I believe the one in my scripture bag had pure intentions of learning more about the gospel. Sadly, though, I kicked it out on its rear and sent it packing toward the direction of our neighbors the next door down.

We're not exactly sure what we'll do today, considering Jeremy's on his way to Bangkok and we've covered the handful of tourist attractions in Siem Reap. I plan to buy a backpack here that can hold all of my luggage. I think it will be useful for college and for any other excursions I may want to make. Other than that, just a day of books, food and relaxation. Although, I must say, we'll probably be spending a whole lot less now that Jeremy's gone. He's a bad influence on me when it comes to ordering food, I always order much more or much more expensive food when my company intends to make a social eater of me. (:

Anywho, that is all the news I have for now, we hope to start working Monday, but the NGO company hasn't emailed Tonya back, so hopefully we'll have something to do by then. Tonya's saying we might actually do the research project she had originally intended to work on coming out here, we'd just need a translator, so hopefully the company she's corresponding with will be able to provide one. Cross your fingers!

Tomorrow, we're planning on attending the only branch in Siem Reap that actually just opened about 3 months ago! I'm very excited to get to see such a small branch of God's church and the ways His gospel survives in even the most desolate places of the church.

Well, that's about it. I hope all of you are well and having a fun summer. Cambodia is such a wonderful place from what I've seen. The tuk-tuk drivers can be a little pushy, but the people here are so kind and humble. It's been truly wonderful to get to see God's children out here and what kind of work they've done. I'm not sure when I'll be posting again, probably when we come back to the Blue Pumpkin and I've done something worth noting, so until then, I love you all very much and will talk to you later!