Still here in Cambodia…

Styrofoam is not much used for packaging food in North America and Europe but it’s alive and well here in Cambodia. There is a beginning awareness of the need to phase out practices harmful to the environment, but getting rid of styrofoam is difficult in a culture where so many people eat on the street going to and from work and school.

Many cities and towns have strict rules how garbage is to be set out for collection. In some places householders must use special containers or separate different kinds of trash or put the garbage in a special place for pickup. In Phnom Penh there are basically no rules and the garbage truck crews go around with pitchforks to pick up piles of trash on the street corners and throw it in the back of the truck. They are dedicated workers! Garbage crews in other parts of the world would not put up with people just throwing garbage anywhere.

In this area of Phnom Penh, this small street has no sidewalk or area to set garbage on the side of the road so all the residents hang it in plastic bags. It lacks aesthetic beauty but the garbage crews must love it because they don’t have to bend over and shovel but just pick plastic bags from the fence and throw them into the truck.

Not a good future for these birds…

Here is a cage with eight roosters in it. It was just on the sidewalk in front of a typical shophouse. The owner would be keeping them for cock fighting. They got into a few battles while I watched, just because there were too many of them in a cage designed for one rooster. Is it illegal? Cockfighting is, but these cages are out in the open everywhere.

Changing times

Years ago this little house with a sloping roof might have been quite the thing: on a major street corner and even has concrete lower walls. Now it’s lost any allure it once had and is a sorry remnant of a former era. It’s surrounded by more modern buildings, it has a huge billboard stanchion right in front of it, and it’s rather decrepit. But it has an air conditioner!

Limted Time Only

Tucked in among high-rises and modern buildings is this old traditional wooden house. Its days are probably numbered. Right now mom and dad are still there and make a little money selling a bit of sand and gravel, but when they are gone–whoosh! The kids will sell the land for another apartment block.

Easy Rider

Cambodia children start riding motorcycles–in their mother’s arms–from the week they are born so they are used to it and comfortable with that mode of transportation. This woman certainly seems casual about her ride.