Let me introduce you to the world’s cutest kids.
Now, let me introduce you to the world’s cutest mother and daughter.
One of the best ways I got to know Vet and the other staff/locals well was through the conversations that flowed once all the dinner dishes were cleared and the students sent off to their houses. Every night, we’d sit around a circle, often snacking on this and that, and chat late into the night. While our talks were typically lighthearted, I found that more often than not, they would inevitably turn a corner and onto the topic of the Khmer Rouge. This sudden turn in conversation shouldn’t have shocked me as much as it did for I’m about Cambodia’s war torn past, but it’s often easy to forget that the people who surrounded you can have such disparate memories and childhoods from your own when on the surface they act and seem like any other normal person. It was a heart breaking to realize that just about every Cambodian man and woman in their 30’s+ has a story of how the Khmer Rouge turned his/her life upside down, whether that mean that he grew up in refugee camp or her family was forced into a labor camp. Those small candle lit conversations peaked and flowed with loss and heartbreak, but their words ultimately left me inspired because of their ability to move on with a bright outlook on the future.
It’s funny, it actually kind of looks like I know what I’m doing #lies
Ox cart ride out to an ancient ruins site that was created as the prototype for Angkor Wat. Best part? No tourists.
Might I mention that it was incredibly sunny
During our time in the village, we were welcomed into the homes of several local families who took us under their wings for several days. The photo above shows the house that I stayed in with 4 other students. On the last night, I slipped out to take photos of the night sky, but it seems as though my disappearance didn’t escape the elder mom’s watch as she quickly joined me out in the dark farmland where my camera was already set up on a tripod.
After showing her how the camera could capture the light of her waving flashlight and the distant stars, she excitedly led me around her land and gestured at what she thought I ought to take photos of, such as her cows and their hut. My favorite part about our entire exchange was seeing her reaction to the photos that we took. I assume that she became so giddy because she was viewing subjects that she was so familiar with, like her cows and fruit trees, in such a different way than she had ever seen before.
The power of photography my friends. It opens your eyes to a different world (Y)
Thanks for reading! Have a fantastic day wherever you may be.
P.S – Will be joining Buffalo Tour’s Annual General Meeting at a resort in Phuket in two days to create their Responsible Tourism Travel Video – excited to take a break from Chiang Mai’s smog and into the naiiceee sun 🙂