I am very much a person who likes life to be well thought out and organized, even more so now that we are in Asia where things tend to be a bit unpredictable at best. Before each visit to Cambodia I make a concerted effort to plan carefully so that I ensure that I maximize my time there. Admittedly, I am pretty task oriented and something of a control freak.
My dear Cambodian friends are just the opposite. They are very much about relationships; are gentle, accepting and totally unassuming. It is often difficult to set up appointments from outside the country due to issues of language barriers especially in written form but there is also the reality of Cambodia. There if you show up, people simply put everything else on hold and give you their full attention. I am trying to learn from them to be more flexible and focused on people not events but I have a long way to go.
Anyway, in spite of the fact that I arrived in Phnom Penh with very little in terms of solid appointments, God once again gave me a very full and successful week. Since I was there this week with my friends Su Min and Sing Yu who have some class, I upgraded to the Billabong Hotel, $3 more per night but a much better location. It was a little frightening when we first pulled up to the gate but not bad once inside and it even has a pool
Monday night we had a lovely supper with a newly CHE trained couple from Partners Against Poverty. Tuesday I met up with a nursing friend to give her some children’s vitamins donated by a colleague of Steve’s to be used in her village project. I spent the afternoon with TWR staff reviewing changes to a funding proposal that we have been working on. Another three hours on the proposal back at the hotel and I emailed it off at 10:30 at night, eight hours ahead of schedule.
Wednesday and Thursday we spent with our partners from RHAC and CGA planning our up coming training sessions. Thursday afternoon we did some shopping and had supper with the TWR Country Co-ordinator and his wife, Veasna and Sela. Back at the hotel I struggled to stay awake for a Skype conference call with our co-workers in Calgary and Switzerland.
I finally hit the sack at 1:30 knowing I needed to be up and going by 6 in order to have an early breakfast and see Su Min and Sing Yu off to the airport. Always on the lookout for other networking opportunities, I still had one more meeting with a CHE trained Australian Social Worker before heading out to the airport myself. As much as I love Cambodia, I was plenty happy to get home to our own little place in KL even if Steve is off in Bali for the weekend.