The healthcare system in Cambodia is not very robust. Medical professionals often lack extensive training and the general populace has little understanding of basic health and hygiene concepts. COVID-19 is established in the country (we have 119 confirmed infections as of today) but the idea of a virus and how it is transmitted is not well understood. Not knowing what a virus is, the presumption is that evil spirits are causing the disease and so families and villages set up scarecrow-like ting mongs to frighten away the evil spirits.
For a week or ten days the government has been floating stories in the government press about enacting a state of emergency. I assumed they were preparing the populace for the notion. Now a couple hours ago, the prime minister announced (the prakah or regulation above) there was about a 0.1% chance of implementing the state of emergency. No reason given except a comment that a state of emergency is for only “when the situation is beyond our control.” I guess that means he feels things are under control. I’ve heard a couple officials in the US say that things were under control, too….
“WAITING.” I guess that’s what we are all doing these days, around the world. And it’s only just begun! With strengthened community quarantine rules prohibiting many from physically leaving their home, what’s in store for us? Have you thought about what it will be like two or three weeks or a month from now? Because of the tensions, we could get on each other’s nerves. How long will this last? No one likes to wait. In the meantime, we get worried, anxious, fearful, impatient, and angry.
Let’s step back and get the right perspective. First of all, let’s be thankful. We have electricity, water, shelter, food—the basic necessities. We have each other online with phone calls, e-mail, texts, Zoom, Viber, Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, and so much more. Get into a daily routine. Keep God as part of your day. Spend time in His Word and talk about Him to your family. Keep exercising, studying, working, and most of all smiling. This too will pass.
A friend, with more time at home because of COVID-19, wrote:
“Always before I said I didn’t do a thorough cleaning of the house because I didn’t have time. Now I know that wasn’t true.”
There are currently about 15,000 foreigners basically trapped in Cambodia. They were here for vacations and business and other reasons, and while they were here their flights out were canceled as countries closed their borders and stopped flights because of the COVID-19 disease. Now they’re stuck here, away from home. This article today is about a petition to the UK government to help them get out of the Kingdom of Wonder.