What is his story?

This young man is selling bags of various fruits from a modified motorcycle. From here the red fruits look like apples but they are not.

I often wonder if this is one of the “desperation” jobs in the informal economy. It could be that the young man’s family owns some land with fruit trees and the family kids hit the streets with fruit every day. More likely is that he can’t find a steady job so he rents the motorcycle from the fruit orchard and gets a cut of whatever he can sell during the day. How long will he do that? Just one day? One week? One month? Would anyone keep at it for longer than that, earning a dollar or two a day?


I had the photos and text ready to post last night but then I got distracted by numerous calls and messages from people seeking help from the St. Vincent de Paul Society of the church and I completely forgot about posting when I finished with all the messages.

Post-Lockdown Day 1 (May 6)

Last night at midnight, the government redrew the yellow, orange, and red zones that indicate the levels of Covid-19 infection within Phnom Penh. The Maryknoll office (arrow) was in an organge zone but now is yellow which allows fewer restrictions on activities.

Recent Developments

  • The revision of the color zones was good news for most people and only a few got the bad news of becoming a red zone. There seemed to be fewer snafus than usual in people’s moving around today.
  • Our DDP program manager was able to talk his way out of his home’s red zone and get to the DDP office along with our accountant. Together they were able to prepare the authorization papers to allow the banks to direct deposit the April salaries of the DDP staff.

Lockdown Day 16

The Covid-19 situation in Cambodia, and especially in Phnom Penh, changes by the hour. More areas of the city have been designated as Red Zones with very strict control of movements.

Recent Developments

  • After more than two weeks of lockdown, infection numbers and new cases are still at their highest levels.
  • The army was mobilized today to vaccinate everyone in the Red Zones and then everyone in Phnom Penh.
  • Large numbers of hungry people have protested on the streets about lack of food. The government says the protests are political.
  • The period from May 6 to June 18 was announced as the time when all those who are receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine will receive their second dose.

White people. Do something.

“Racism is a sin; a sin that divides the human family, blots out the image of God among specific members of that family, and violates the fundamental human dignity of those called to be children of the same Father.”

U.S. Catholic Bishops

“My friends, we cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every human life.” 

Pope Francis