A Travellerspoint blog

Hell and back in 48 hours.

Well almost

On Thursday afternoon I came down with a fever! When it got above 39degrees at about 6pm it as decided that I should go to the clinic in Takmou. This clinic was quite basic. Being the only foreigner I obviously created a lot of interest for the local Cambodians as they all stared at me as I walked in. It was an interesting experience to say the least. They only person who spoke any English was one of the staff members who is in my class at night time. So it really tested the quality of my lessons. Because of the language barrier there was a bit of a communication problem as I tried to tell them that I am allergic to morphine and penicillin. Once I managed to that across all talking stopped. I was poked and prodded and had needles jabbed in me with out any warning. While I was having hot and cold sweats and mussel pains. They eventually put me on an IV drip and throughout the night I went thought 1.5L of fluids. This all happened with a crowd of eight or so Cambodians watching.

(I will try the keep the next part a clean a possible but a warning the will be a few gory details)

The toilet in the clinic was a squat toilet! Not much more than a hole in the floor. There was no toilet paper!!! So as you could imaging when you are vomiting and have diarrhea all throughout the night. You feel like you are in hell!!!!!! But I survived!! The next morning I went in to the city and had a blood and stool test taken and I was discovered that I had some sort of bacterial infection and was given some antibiotics.
By Saturday afternoon I was well and truly on the road to recovery.

Not a whole lot more has happened. Things are well and truly into a routine I am continuing to have lots of fun.

Posted by Mike Lee 22:40 Archived in Cambodia Comments (1)

The past few weeks

Cambodia

Hi one and all, It has been a while since I last made an entry on my bog so I will try to fill you in on the adventures I have had over the past few weeks.

Up until a few day ago I had been having withdrawal symptoms. With no flying, abseiling or canyoning this adrenalin junky has been missing been search of his adrenalin fix. I got this the other day. The school owns some solar power torches that are used after the generator goes off at 9. They are charged by small solar panels on the roof. One of them had a problem and needed to be replaced. I volunteered to do it!! With no ropes or safety equipment of any kind (I do not think Cambodia has heard of OH&S) I climbed up on the tin roof to replace it!! IT GOT THE ADRENALIN GOING!!!

In recent weeks I was been lucky enough to experience the joys of helping someone lean to walk. Gadup, a boy who I think is about 13/14 year old, has always been in a wheel chair. But in recent weeks he has been determined to walk! I has been the most amazing sight!! At first he struggled to stand. But now he is walking at a normal pace with the help to crutches.
When his class was in the pool I took him for some walking laps. I was great to seem an improvement in his walk in the 30 min I was in the pool with him.
One day I was about to take one of my English classes and I noticed him walking (more stumbling) to the toilets. I stood for a bit to watch him and then he feel. I ran over to help him and he had the biggest smile on his face.

There are currently three Marist brothers living in Phnom Penh. They are from Colombia, Spain and Zimbabwe. They have been here for about a year studding Khmer before they start a project (still undecided) towards the end of this year. Sine our arrival they have been keen for tom and I to spend a weekend with them. So last weekend we did! I really enjoyed my time with them. They took us for a boat trip on the Sap and Mekong rivers and showed us around their part of Phnom Penh. It was great to have a meal that was like a meal from home (aka a dinner with no rice). On Saturday morning we went to their local markets. They stick out in the crowd!! It was funny to see that every one knew them and all of the local children came up to say “hello”.

For those of you who like me enjoy wasting good houres on Google earth here is a link of the school.
http://maps.google.com/\?ie=UTF8&ll=11.444653,104.947817&spn=0.002392,0.003455&t=h&z=18

I am continuing to have a good time!
Hope all is well.

Posted by Mike Lee 22:33 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

Siem Reap

Temples of Angkor

I am in Siem Reap!! You may remember reading that a few weeks ago Tom and I visited some of the kids homes as a part of the process of sorting out there options for when the graduate form the school. These visits have continued over the past few weeks. This weekend Visal(one of the drivers) was taking two of the kids who live near Siem Reap home to continue this process. So Tom and I got a ride!! The decision that Tom and I would go along was only made on late Friday afternoon so we did very little planning for this weekend but going in the car with Visal added more to the whole adventure. We left bright an early on Saturday morning in a full car as Visal also brought his family along for the trip. WE stopped off on the way for some breakfast at normal Cambodian roadside restaurant. Breakfast was a noodle soup with pork and fried crickets!!! YES fried insects!! Tom and I had the whole table laughing at us as we tried them. It was surprising nice. I when back for a second. The trip itself was an experience Visal never let his speed drop below 100 km/h. At times my heart stopped as we missed trucks buy only centimeters!!!

Yesterday tom and I went to visit the temples of Angkor. It was an absolutely magic day!!!!!!

Waking at 4:30 so we could see the sun rise over the temples we put our bicycles that we had hired on to a tuk-tuk and went out to the temples. Hiring the bikes for the day was the best decision we made!! It gave us so much more freedom. With our bikes we were able to go down some dirt tracks of the main road. Some lead to smaller temples and others lead to villages or nothing particularly exciting. While I enjoyed the main temples I found some of the smaller temples more interesting as that had a bit more character to them. Instead of following the crowds back to town for lunch we eat at a small stall near one of the temples and were joined by a nice tuk-tuk driver who spoke good English. We spend the whole day at the temples doing in one day what most do in 3. After visiting our last temple cycling along we came across some kids walking back to there village after selling drinks and books to tourists all day. We gave them a ride for a couple of kilometers there village as they sang to us. We then stayed to watch the sunset before heading back. All up we visited 11 or 12 temples and road just over 40km!! On the ride back to town we meet an American couple who has also been cycling around (only of half the day) and joined them for dinner!
It was a long day but it was bloody fantastic!!!

Posted by Mike Lee 22:51 Archived in Cambodia Comments (1)

Photos

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Some Photos

Posted by Mike Lee 01:39 Archived in Cambodia Comments (6)

Cambodia

Yesterday a new bridge was opened in Southern Phnom Penh because the prime mister was attending roads were closed from 12midnight to 11am. The road closers include one of the main roads in and out of the city. This meant that staff were unable to get to school so classes where canceled for the day. I do not know about you but I would have thought the reason for closing the roads at midnight was so the stage and pavilions could be set up before the ceremony in the morning, but that is not the way in Cambodia. They were set up some time on Tuesday when the road was open. This meant that the traffic had to weave in and out of the poles holding the pavilions up!! It was quite funny to watch and our driver vassal did a grate job!
Tom and I were in the city on Tuesday because we were invited to see some of the work the marynoll is doing. They are running a big project for orphans who are HIV positive. The kids say in “group homes with 5 to 12 children. During the day they go to the local school and attuned some computer classes at the marynoll name office. Tom told Father Kevin that I was good with computers so I ended up spending an hour working on there computers fixing different problems. I am going to go back this week to spend some more time working to the computers.

Things are into a routine now at the school and I am enjoying it. It is a remarkable place!! I often have little encounters with the kids that make me realize what a special place this is. One such experience was on Saturday with Chiya. Chiya is a boy with muscular dystrophy. I do not know much about muscular dystrophy but it means he is unable to use is muscles in his legs and arms so he is in a wheelchair and always has to be pushed by some one else. Although he can not play as some of the games the other kids play I have had some fierce thumb war competitions with him. Any way on Saturday it took him for a swim and it was the most amazing experience. It was truly remarkable!!!!
Yesterday with no classes tom and I ran a hokey competition. It was so much fun! All the kids got involved and it was wonderful to see there faces light up when they scored a goal!!!

Thanks for the tips on teaching English I seem to be getting somewhere with my classes and I am enjoying the lessons.

Posted by Mike Lee 01:22 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

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