Friday, December 20, 2013

Water freezes at 0 deg C, Cambodians freeze at 22deg

The main thing people are talking about is how cold it is these days, the paper said its the coldest in about 30 years. Some of my friends are feeling sick and miserable because they just can't get warm, even though they are wearing their warmest clothes.

Its been in the low 20s, so for me its a relief as Im usually feeling too hot. I went for a walk the other day, about 2km, something i would do everyday in Aust, but its just too hot and dusty here (and I'm sharing the road with motorbikes and 4wd, even without a pram and the potholes it quite exhausting).

This is one of the times that being an expat is frustrating/isolating. Most of the the people I see in a normal week are genuinely feeling really cold, and I don't think they believe me, or really get it if I tell them I'm not.

It is much colder than usual, ( I even found my pair of socks as I wanted to wear them the other night. In the end I didn't because it was hard to walk, too slippery, all our floors are tile) but I feel happy about it, not something to complain about!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

You know its cold season when...

... people wear big jackets in the morning.
...going outside takes way less effort.
...doing anything physical takes way less effort.
...people tell to you to put long pants on your baby.
...all the other babies are wearing winter clothes. Aussie missionary writes on fb that it got down to 23- Freezing! Awesome! Bible study group the fans get turned off and the scarves come out.

Thursday, December 05, 2013

expanding city, changing neighbourhood, time to explore!

Now that the city has expanded out to us (in a way), and I've done all the hard things for the year (in a way- moving back to Cambodia twice, once from Aust, second time from having Baby in Thailand) I'm finally getting to know the people around us and enjoying the area. Also now that I'm not pregnant and I've had my shots not so concerned about what i eat- eg MSG, typhoid etc. (not that i'm trying to get sick!!)

Plus its cool season- doing everything is WAY EASIER than in hot season.

Recently discovered some places to eat, close by, cheap. Dinner is about $1.50 (US dollar) and this pork and rice breakfast in the photo is about $1 dollar.  And unlike other khmer places i've eaten it doesn't feel to chaotic. I used to eat for 50 cents with some khmer teachers, it was on a street corner, lots of motos whizzing by just just centre metres away etc, so exhausting. This food is 3 times the price and for me thats worth it. They even hold my baby when I eat.

And if you know phnom penh traffic and "public transport" you'll understand what a big bonus it is that I can walk there.
Out for breakfast, pork and rice, yum!
There was a 50 cent place near us when we lived before but whenever the Bible school students went there the got sick, so I never tried it. I did eat "khmer noodles" on the street near by but they always made me a bit sick. But they were so yummy and the seller was so nice so I kept buying them and eating them and getting a little bit sick. I don't think I ever got sick from street food in China, but here its different.

Eating out alone at nearby shop, so easy and cheap, free baby holding with my 1.50$ fried rice, comes with icedtea, great for weekends when Soeun is at church til late
When I first moved to this area of town there weren't any internet cafes, and we didn't have it at home either, it seemed like no companies service this area (maybe they did but it was expensive). Now we have net at home and a net cafe a few min walk away! So internet access is much easier, and at this time of the year not many power cuts, probs as easy as it gets.

Also these days there are lots of paved roads, which make means my back isn't so sore and my house isn't so dusty.

There are a number of Western cafes/ food chains that deliver here now, we tried a few years ago but they always said they only deliver with in the tourist map, now I get get food from Java (1.50 delivery fee), The Pizza Co, The Shop Too and probably others. Also there are now some supermarkets only 5km- ish away from here, it used to be a longer journey. Sometimes I'd be bringing cheese back by bike, 40 min in the PP sun is not good for dairy products!

We used to eat either on campus with the students (which also cost around 50 cents) or buy food from the near by market and cook it ourselves, not living on campus has been quite different.

Monday, December 02, 2013

Lull between broken things getting fixed

Over the last week we've been enjoying not having any people coming to fix our house. The original tradespeople from the company who built the house didn't come back for ages, so our new landlord found another one. So finally they drilled up more tiles and cement on our roof and in our bedroom, and fixed the electricity the bought some more tiles and put them on. So now we have electricity and the power works- and we don't have to step over holes of rubble to get to the washing machine. And we don't have water seeping in in the roof.

Having the noise and dust and people was pretty annoying, felt like there wasn't anywhere safe for Baby.

However the wet/ mildew patch on the downstairs ceiling is growing. And we noticed there are other wet patches on internal walls, so maybe a pipe is leaking or something. We did point the patch out to the landlord last time, but there were more urgent things then. Fixing this might been not just drilling up certain bits of the floor, maybe they have to hack out huge chunks of wall???!!