Mission to Cambodia

I really do have a reason for not posting in so long, I was out of the country for several days without internet access ( at least not to my blog.) Plus my family is moving so I’ve been sorting and packing. No one’s been visiting the blog anyway, so I guess there’s nothing lost.

I went to Cambodia. Woo-hoo! That was awesome. I was on a missions trip. My first one.

I rode an elephant, tried crocodile meat, ate more rice than ever before in my life, and traveled everywhere in a bus. I thankfully did not get eaten by bugs or food poisoned or dehydrated.

I went to see the temples near Siam Reap, and got a short tour of the capital Phnom Penh’s sights.

I also flew for the first time I can remember and I enjoyed that too.

This is all just the non-important stuff that sounds cool. Since the people who made my trip possible were a mix of Christians and non-Christians I’ve learned that certain things don’t matter as much to everyone.  if I told you that the main thing I did was work and play with the kids at an orphanage, would that mean more to you?

I don’t know my audience. But I do know that my favorite part was the kids. That’s not unusual for me. But around kids in America I can often feel out of the loop. They usually want to watch TV, or play on their phones, sometimes I want to scream when I see an eight year old lost in the digital/virtual realities. Or worse, a four-year old. Even when you talk to them, it’s not always much better. I’m not about bashing Americans by any means, but I noticed a marked difference in Cambodia. The kids enjoy electronics as a novelty, but they are just as willing to engage in simpler activities. They seem to really enjoy being around you, and they enjoy every experience they can. Whether it’s painting, or climbing on a roof, or going to the marketplace. Or maybe it’s just playing rock, paper, scissors; or kicking a ball around in a circle.

The life of orphans is not very secure in Cambodia, money wise. The Government there does not always support orphanages; in fact, recently it made it harder for them to keep going. The group running the one we went to, FCOP (Foursquare Children of Promise,) had to let a lot of kids go because of some new regulation.

But the Cambodians never came across as anxious about life. Even though there are a lot of poor people there, poverty did not seem the same as it is here. Not that it was better exactly, but it was less visible. No obviously homeless people on street corners with signs, for example.

To the christian who may read this, the spiritual climate it there is much different from it is in western civilisation. They accept spirituality as a part of life, like the rain. They have spirit houses set up everywhere that offerings are left in. Buddhism abounds, incense altars can be found in plenty of locations, even that the tourist goes to. Despite these facts there isn’t a lot of actually practice of the religion in the younger generation. Which I think I heard was the majority of the population. For reasons I forget, the bulk of the Cambodian are 20-30 or under. (Google it.)

It just felt right to be doing the trip, I can’t explain it beyond that, I was at peace with the things that were happening. I’m sure I’ll tell more of this anon.

Natasha

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