With the new distancing regulations for classrooms because of COVID-19, we needed a larger classroom and decided to trade this meeting room for the old smaller classroom. As part of the trade, we had to put an outside door in the new classroom and also an awning to create a sheltered space outside
Inside the biggest change was removing a bathroom in the back corner to give more space.

Happy Birthday!

Today was Russ Brine’s birthday and the staff presented him with a cake for the occasion and a subsequent mini-party to provide a little merriment and good wishes. In Chinese culture it was an auspicious occasion, marking five times through the Chinese zodiac cycle.

Flood damage

The recent flooding–still continuing–has caused a lot of inconvenience to people forced to move, and disruption to people going to work and school. It has also caused a lot of physical damage to the streets. The Cambodians have never actually caught on how to properly pave a road–the usual 1/8th inch of asphalt over gravel doesn’t work so well–and the repeated submersion in water has taken its toll, with many streets now well potholed.

Changing cityscape

This block near the Maryknoll office illustrates the shifting nature of the city. On the corner is an old traditional wooden house, modified with more modern side paneling and a small business on the ground floor. Then there are two four-story houses, the new normal for most of the Phnom Penh residents, and then in the background is the Era Hotel, closed since March, but a visible expression of the high-rise architecture spreading through the city.

Tasty “snakes”

Today some of the DDP staff got the idea to fry up some “snakes,” as Cambodians tend to pronounce “snacks.” Sliced gourd, potato slices, some cabbage, and sliced onions were battered and then fried in oil in the wok. Served with a pepper and lemon juice sauce, they were delicious!

Daddy’s working

On take-your-child-to-work day, parents around the world let their children see where they work and how they earn a living. In a country where there is no daycare and mother is probably working in a garment factory, this little boy spends every day with his father who repairs flat tires on the side of the road.