29.01.2014 - 29.01.2014
I am so tired today.. woke up at 4.30am and was wide awake and couldn't go back to sleep. Davy had organised the morning for us to go and visit the military village where there are cottages for disabled soldiers and a school for the village. Her husband works for the military so she has had a bit to do with the area and saw a need to help those who lived there. It was a pretty big drive out to the spot and took 40 minutes by bus to get there but I didn't mind as I was taking in the sights and sounds of Cambodia which never get old for me.
Davy showed us the area and talked us through some of the developments that have been taking place there. A previous contingent of JCU students spent time in this area and did a lot of work at the school. We visited the library and was very impressed with the murals they had painted. Tara knew one of the girls from that group and took photos and sent them to her.
It is great to visit projects that other groups have been involved in as it gives you an idea of how the work we are doing will continue to make a difference long after we have come home.
We then visited the little cottage that Davy's husband sometimes stays in when he is working and she showed us the construction site of the house she is building next door. It was very interesting to see how building a house is done in Cambodia! Check out the photos!
While we were watching the house being constructed we saw the weirdest looking rooster walk past.. Tara nicknamed it a Turken as it looked like a cross between a chicken and a turkey.. Kaann told us it had probably lost a cock-fight!
After exploring the military village we headed to the landmines museum which was absolutely riveting, fascinating and terribly sad. We started the tour by watching a video about the guy Aki Ra who is an ex-child soldier that after years of fighting he returned to the villages in which he planted thousands of mines and began removing them, by hand, and defusing them with homemade tools. If you want to see more about this fascinating museum visit the website http://www.cambodialandminemuseum.org/
After our visit to the landmine we were all starving and headed to La Boulangerie where I had a fantastic cheeseburger and fries and then Tara got a sneaky crepe next door at the Le Crepiere (our favourite shop) before heading back to the guesthouse to organise our trip to Spitler school this afternoon to organise the craftroom. I told the girls I would walk to the furniture place and buy the cabinet, chairs and craft trolley so when the bus came back it would be ready to put in and we could go. Well I thought the furniture shop was a lot closer than it actually was and 20 minutes later I finally got to it. I enjoyed the walk though and needed to have the time to clear my head as it had been a rough day with a misunderstanding with one of the girls had put me in a bad mood. We have all been living together pretty closely for 4 weeks so it was bound to happen still doesn't make it any easier.
After some pretty ordinary communication I purchased the stuff and eventually found a tuk tuk who wasn't going to rob me blind to take me back to the guesthouse where I arrived just in time to get on the bus and head out to the school. We picked up the furniture packed the bus with all the stationery supplies we had purchased with the generous donations from back home.. as well as the donated books that everybody dropped off and went to the school.
We all worked hard and consistently to re-organise all the craft supplies and the books and we think we have a very nice organised and orderly craft area which will be a great asset to the school. We are going to label all of the shelves and drawers in Khmer and English so hopefully it will stay that way. I love organising so I really enjoyed this afternoon and I wish you guys who helped donate could see just how awesome the library now looks.. the photos don't do it justice and I forgot to take before photos!
The Kurata group were done labelling their books so we picked them up and headed home. Lauren and Kristie worked on the final photobook and put those and the school photos in tonight to be hopefully ready tomorrow.
We then went to $1 night and ate like kings for $6 which is so fun before heading into town for a foot massage to kill some time before we met a guy who had won a tattoo voucher at bingo the other night and was giving it to Lisa.
Kristie and I decided to do an at home facial and put a mask on and now I am trying to motivate myself to finish the volunteers guidebook we are putting together and my lesson plans for Friday.. I love Cambodia and think I could definitely live here but am missing my family and friends like crazy!