How can I begin to explain my relationship
with this country? It's a place I now call home. For the past two years, the
sights, smells and sounds have filled my senses. Soon these will disappear and
be replaced by the modernity of a western country.
When people have visited they have said it
smells, it's dirty and so on. For me that's what makes Cambodia, Cambodia. It's
what I think endears us all to this country. It's like that scruffy toy we all
have somewhere from our childhood. When anyone else looks at it they think it's
disgusting, but to the owner it's the most perfect toy in the world. That's how
I view this country. Other's coming in might think; look at the rubbish, look
at the child, look at that noodle truck in the middle of the pavement, look at
the smelly river. They can't understand it. For us, it's Cambodia style. We
know it has problems, some much bigger than others. We love it all the same.
Over two years, those problems I am used to
and am no longer bothered by. They could drive a little better though and perhaps
drink a little less. How can I leave? That is a question I don't know the
answer to. It's going to be like a tongue stuck to an icy lamp post. It will be
a wrench and it'll hurt a lot. I know I have to. For my prospects to improve
and for my future to be more assured I have to leave and study at university.
This Greg hates it, however I think future Greg will be very thankful. It's
just incredibly difficult to see it now. I want to be here for as long as
possible. In fact, I only just booked my ticket yesterday. The ticket I did book is last the possible
date I can be here.
I will have parties and I will have
goodbyes. However it's not just those people that I will miss. It's the old lady
who sells me my breakfast in the morning, it's the lady who sells me my
mangoes, it's the people who make up the background of this place but make it
all the richer. The ones who come in and out of our lives but will know
something's amiss when the white fella doesn't come anymore. The goodbyes are
going to be the hardest part. I have already written about goodbye being the
hardest word when I finished at the volunteer school all that time ago. That
was a temporary goodbye and I made good on my promise to go back and do it
again. This time, for everyone, it is permanent. How do I say goodbye to people
that I have made immensely strong connections with. They are from a different
culture, different backgrounds, a different
country and speak a different language. How or when did that happen?
I don't want to go.
So for the last two months, I will finish
work. I will begin to sell my things. I will begin to prepare myself mentally.
I will have parties. I will pack. I will go. This isn't something I want.
How can I leave my volunteer school? They
are all so hopeful and filled with life. How can I leave the orphanage? They
have taught me so much about life. Truly humbling people. How can I not speak
this language I love? It's incredibly complex and interesting. How can I leave
my international friends? It's going to be a bubble burster. We all live in
this little Cambodia bubble and I have to blow it up.
I don't want to go. However I must prepare
for it all the same.
Link of the day : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9Vh_z9mtv8
Class A Volunteer School
Orphanage Day Out
Orphanage Football Team - I coach them.
Football for Kampuchea
The website for the charity Football for Kampuchea (F4K). It contains all the details you want to know about us and even a place to donate!