This is another view from our balcony! so don’t look down. We recently moved house and everything went smoothly(there wasn’t a lot to move so that helped) and we now feel really at home and settled.We are in the same area which is good as we have made a lot of friends and it is quite close to the school for Edward and Lenna.Christmas here has been hot,as you would expect,but rather strange for an ex-pat as Cambodians do not celebrate Christmas and to them it is just another day and business as usual. A few shops have decorations up and you do see the occasional Christmas tree. On Christmas Day we went to church in the morning and to some friends afterwards for dinner with about ten others . It was a lovely time and we were able to enjoy turkey and get into the real Christmas spirit.
Just before the Christmas period we distributed 2000 shoeboxes filled with gifts to various churches and organisations. It was a privilige to see a lot of them being received by children who had nothing and I was surprised by how disciplined and grateful they all were. We could well have given out nearly another 1000 and our thanks go out to the church in Singapore who financed and packaged all the boxes.
At our headquarters we had a Christmas celebration and gave out over 200 boxes . As part of our celebration we did a short play and I was chosen to play King Herod. It was a non speaking part but I still managed to get all the children under the age of two in Bethlehem and its vicinity killed- I didn’t sleep easy that night.
While it is The Festive Season for some of us it is just another day for most here in CambodiaThese kids would have been out collecting rubbish just like any other day. Their days work would have got them no more than $2 in total(@£1.20) but to them it is money for the next meal and money to help pay the rent.Although they have nothing it is a pleasure to be in their company and they are just the same as kids all over the world-just a little bit more streetwise maybe.
Finally, I have just been invited to a wedding tomorrow-my first in Cambodia. A couple were having difficulties with each other and after having a period of counselling with our NGO,have decided to re-commit their marriage vows…I am looking forward to it.