Posted on January 14, 2016
In July of 2015 I came to Cambodia for a two week photo class detailing story telling through photography. This is where I made my first contact with Phare, The Cambodian Circus. Since then I have attended and photographed numerous shows and events and I was happy to be able to document some of the activities while they took down the big top and moved it across town to their new home.
The circus is associated with Phare Ponleu Selpak (the brightness of the arts) in Battambang, Cambodia. PPS was started in 1986 in a refugee camp along the Thai/Cambodia border. The founders were seeking a way to help children through the trauma of war by way of the creative arts. Read More
It happens every year. There is no stopping it. One year ends and another begins. People party, watch the ball drop in New York City and make promises to themselves for the upcoming year.
A new exercise regiment? Eat food that helps your body instead of hurting it? Fit into that dress/swimsuit/jeans by summer? Resolutions have been around as long as anyone knows and they will probably be here forever. There is nothing wrong with resolutions and they may as well start on a day we can remember easily.
Let this be the year…..
Christmas in Cambodia is nothing like Christmas in America. That can be a good thing or it can be a bad thing depending on how you look at it.
I spent the first forty years of my life in western New York where a white Christmas was almost a given. Some years there would be enough snow to cover the ground and other years we had so much snow it had us wishing we lived in Florida. For me a white Christmas was to be expected.
That changed in 2003 when I moved to Hawaii and a green Christmas became the norm. Although different it was something I liked. Going outside and enjoying the sun on December 25th was a refreshing change to the cold, wintery holidays of my past. In the beginning it took a little getting used to and the Christmas spirit took a little more searching but it didn’t take me long to cherish the differences while understanding that most of the world does not get a white Christmas. Read More
My home base in Cambodia is Siem Reap but there is so much more to explore in this country that I need to take short trips every now and then. Phnom Penh, the capital, is the largest city in Cambodia and I took a little time to visit the city with my niece and my friend.
Transportation to Phnom Penh, a little more than 300 kilometers to the south, can take many forms and it accommodates just about any price point you want to hit. At the high end is flying. As a foreigner the short flight will put you back about one hundred dollars for a round trip. At the low end a long bumpy ride in a very crowded bus with a lot of stops can set you back six bucks. Shell out fifteen bucks and you get a bigger, less crowded bus that makes less stops and has wifi. Read More
Last year I discovered Sister Srey Cafe near the end of my two month stay in Siem Reap. The cafe is near the old market along the banks of the Siem Reap river. It is run by two Australian sisters who came here a number of years ago and fell in love with Cambodia and its people. Most of the staff at the cafe are pursuing their education while working and they balance work, school and a little bit of Cambodian life. Even with all they have to do they helped me out last year when I was trying to sell my motorbike and again this year they helped me look for an apartment.
Although they didn’t know me from any other tourist they were there to help and I guess that is just the kind of people they are, but this story is not about them. I could write many stories about the people I have met at Sister Srey since I spend a lot of mornings here at the cafe eating and watching the world go by. Cambodian style.
Last year outside the cafe I noticed one of many street vendors in Siem Reap. This guy spends his days on the side of the street selling books off of a two wheeled cart. Last year he caught my eye while eating breakfast as I would watch him set up for the day. As I left the cafe and passed by he would always say hello and smile. Read More