the wonderful trap of phnom penh

It’s hard to believe a month has gone by since I left Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The last few weeks has flown by. I’ve seem to have adjusted back to Hong Kong and slowly reverting back to the Hong Kong lifestyle and mentality, whether that’s a good thing or not, you decide.

One of the things I struggled with was the fact that there are some people out there who doesn’t really care all that much about what you’ve done in Cambodia or why you were there, they might just not understand and therefore, don’t care much about listening to you or asking questions. I seem to focus so much on those people that it slips my mind there are also those who are very intrigued and loves to learn about it.

Over lunch a few times the last few days, I’ve had the chance to tell some of my colleagues about Cambodia. Because HK is so money and success driven, many of us would not ever think about living in a third world country. They are so intruiged about Cambodia, about why I would want to live there and why I like it there. Many of those questions are hard to answer, but after all those conversations, I always end up coming to the same conclusion in my head. And thus the following:

I’m very priveleged to have lived in Cambodia.

Sure it was not always the most pleasant place to live in but thinking back, there is something so unique about phnom penh and cambodia that attracts and sucks in everyone who goes. The way the traffic is, transportation itself, the way Moto and tuk tuk drivers hassle you one after another, the fact that we have to go to more than one grocery store to buy all the nessesary ingredients to cook or bake, the way Cambodians stare at you straight in the eye when they have no idea who you are, and the list goes on.

No matter how stressful everything about and within Cambodia can become, it is also mysteriously relaxing. Hectic, but slow. Overwelming yet once you’ve adjusted to the daily routine, everything seems easier and more convinent than you think. Ah, yes. However long and painful your day might’ve been, you could always step out at night (despite the heat and the mosquitoes), look up- and sit for hours admiring the beautiful night sky with the thousands of stars shinning down at you.

It’s the best of two worlds. I’m very thankful and blessed to have gotten this chance to meet hundreds of friends from all over the world, to explore the culture and to live somewhere so different from home. Of course, can’t forget to mention my parents who supported me in every aspect of the year.

I’ll be back soon. I, along with a number of others, have fallen into the wonderful trap of Phnom Penh and it cannot keep us away for long! God has a wonderful plan for me and I can’t wait to discover more as the years go by.

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