The orphanage I've been helping out at for the past couple of months with football and English teaching. Their blog -http://geckocry.blogspot.com/
The days are like those long summer evenings you never want to end. The nights are like the end of parties when it starts to die down and you're left with your close friends and just talk into the night.
The relationships are as warm as the glowing embers of a bonfire. Every time I drive over there it's like being on a rainbow. For I know, at the end there is a pot of gold. After a long day of work, to just go there and chat is just the most wonderful thought. It calms on the days filled with frustrations. It warms me on the days when I'm sad. It fills me with excitement on good days. It's inexplicable. The dreary greyness of the outside world is shut out and the love and warmth of humans is kept in.
There are problems. The main one being I can't be there all the time, the other being I can't speak more complex Khmer to fully explain concepts or get my idea across. However the kids make concessions and speak simpler for this white foreigner in their midsts.
I now know how my dad used to feel every Sunday night. When he would take me back home after spending the weekend at his house. It's like leaving a piece of your heart behind. The realisation of how truly alone we are in this universe comes crashing down on your back like a tidal wave. If you're lucky enough to have shared this feeling with another person, you truly care for each other. I have it with all the kids in the centre.
Sunday mornings have become my favourite part of the week. I get up at 5:30AM make my way to the football field for coaching for 2 hours. Finish that and pack everything up and take it to the centre. Then we all listen to the director/teacher/mother talk and teach with some prayers and songs. It's enlightening and relaxing. Now, I'm not Christian. However I can see the appeal. To come together at the end of the week, sing, joke, laugh, learn, enlighten and pray. The songs and prayers are in Khmer but it adds to the charm as they are beautifully sung. Not like churches in England with old ladies wailing through the hymns.
It's these memories that I cherish. It's these kids I will miss. It's this pot of gold, this corner of the earth, this place that I will miss. However it will always be in my heart when I'm on the other side of the world.