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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008


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    [post_date] => 2008-07-11 00:00:00
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Hello Nueva Team -

We miss you out here in Cambodia! The three of us just sat down to wrap up some of the trip paperwork and we were missing you very much! How was the flight? Stephen and Suzanne, I really hope you kept the quote book alive for the flight home. We want to hear more about spider meatloaf!!!

We wanted to pass along contact information for some of the groups we visited:

- Contact Rithy if you are interested in learning more about his grassroots environmental educational campaign and clean-up work!

- www.pepyride.org if you want to learn more about what we do at PEPY (come join us as interns some day!)

- www.camnet.com.kh/rehabcraft where Benjamin used to work and they make the beautiful recycled goods

- www.cambodianlivingarts.org for CLA, the dance group, and instrument maker!

- www.roomtoread.org

- www.friends-international.org where we had our nice farewell dinner

- www.crdt.org.kh for CRDT and our wonderful homestay experience

We hope you all continue to learn about Cambodia, development, and responsible tourism. These are topics you had all obviously taken interest in long before you stepped on your flight to Cambodia and we hope this trip helped you move further along on a life-long journey of exploration in these areas.

If you would like to send pictures to be delivered to your homestay PLEASE PLEASE DO! They will be SO happy to see those pictures! Colton - I think you have all of the group photos on your camera. Can you email those to us? If you have photos you would like to have delivered to CRDT or your host family:

- email me a full version of the photo so I can print it out
or
- send the printed photos to:

Daniela Papi
PEPY
PO Box 1235
Phnom Penh
CAMBODIA

We will make sure the photos get to CRDT and the on to Koh Padao!

Really..... .WE MISS YOU! None of us eat spiders, and we miss watching the chewing facial expressions :-) Come back and see us, and keep in touch about your upcoming school year!

Love,

Daniela, Rithy, and Benjamin

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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Come back!

Daniela, Rithy, and Benjamin,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Hello Nueva Team – We miss you out here in Cambodia! The three of us just sat down to wrap up some of the trip paperwork and we were missing you very much! How was the flight? Stephen and Suzanne, I really hope you kept the quote book alive for the flight home. We want […]

Posted On

07/11/08

Author

Daniela, Rithy, and Benjamin

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Hello all!

We had a delicious dinner last night and even fit in some last minute souvenir shopping and card playing.

This morning several of your children got up early to go for a run at the Olympic stadium. In a few minutes, we will have our last noodle soup in PP and then head to the airport. We look forward to seeing you soon!

It has been an incredible trip - your children will share stories and we will share pictures.....

Suzanne and Stephen

Here's the flight info again:

Depart Phnom Penh: 11:25 AM, 10 JULY 2008
Arrive Hong Kong: 3:10 PM, 10 JULY 2008
Dragon Air #207

Depart Hong Kong: 4:25 PM, 10 JULY 2008
Arrive SFO: 1:50 PM, 10 JULY 2008

Cathay Pacific#872

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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Travel Day

Suzanne and Stephen,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Hello all! We had a delicious dinner last night and even fit in some last minute souvenir shopping and card playing. This morning several of your children got up early to go for a run at the Olympic stadium. In a few minutes, we will have our last noodle soup in PP and then head […]

Posted On

07/9/08

Author

Suzanne and Stephen

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Has it been two weeks already? Honestly, it doesn't feel like it. When was the last time I ate a cricket, washed my clothes without an electric appliance, or slept on a mat?

Wait, don't answer that. I know the answer is never.

Back to the point. It's our last night in Cambodia, and we are all in good spirits. Say it's the fact that we get to be in a city again, but I'm sure everyone is happy regardless if we were back in the village watching that awesome spirit ceremonyI hope we all loved watching people throw rice and chant or in Phnom Penh buying tourist-y items.

I quote Kate, "I feel like such a tourist!" I'd say that this definitely came from spending time in that village, helping out in the rice paddies and eating real Cambodian food. Aren't we so lucky to know all these aspects of this wonderful country?

Either way, I still wonder what we all will be thinking when we go to bed, and reflect on our time in Cambodia.

I bet it will be joyful.

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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Last Day

Katherine,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Has it been two weeks already? Honestly, it doesn’t feel like it. When was the last time I ate a cricket, washed my clothes without an electric appliance, or slept on a mat? Wait, don’t answer that. I know the answer is never. Back to the point. It’s our last night in Cambodia, and we […]

Posted On

07/9/08

Author

Katherine

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It is well past dinner and your children are playing cards together in the common room of the Mandalay Guest House in Siem Reap. It is amazing how much energy they still have after a day filled with touring, exploring, and learning. We, on the other hand, are a bit tired but want to share some of what we did over the past week (in the home stays and here in Siem Reap). Below is a list of talking points you can use with your adventurous children when you see them in a few short days.

[FYI - We leave for Phnom Penh first thing tomorrow morning (Wednesday, July 9th) and will spend the afternoon and evening souvenir shopping and eating in the market for the last time. After a night's sleep, we will head to the airport for our flight back home. See you at SFO at 1:50 PM on Thursday, July 10!]

Boat rides

Bicycles

Rice planting

Bamboo cutting

Cement mixing

Biodigesters

Water filters

CRDT

Fried crickets

Spider pact

Dance performance

Spirit House ritual

Outdoor showers

Chickens, pigs, cows, water buffalo

Rice, rice, rice

Communication/Gesticulation

Homestay dinners

Sleeping on floors

Bridges (architectural structures)

Bridge (the card game)

Rain

Mud

Sugar cane, coconuts, rambutan, lychee, mangosteen, dragonfruit

Teaching English

Chicken fights in the Mekong

Farewell ceremony

Tourist comforts in Siem Reap

Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, Bayon

Tuk-tuks

Reflective writing at Ta Prom

Boom Boom Room

Amok

Foot massages

Lots of laughter

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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So many stories, so little time…

Suzanne and Stephen,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

It is well past dinner and your children are playing cards together in the common room of the Mandalay Guest House in Siem Reap. It is amazing how much energy they still have after a day filled with touring, exploring, and learning. We, on the other hand, are a bit tired but want to share […]

Posted On

07/8/08

Author

Suzanne and Stephen

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Hello from Siem Reap!

We arrived safely after an eleven hour journey, had dinner, and are now getting ready to go to sleep. Will write more tomorrow and will have many stories to share about your children's wonderful experiences.

Regards,

Suzanne and Stephen

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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In Siem Reap

Suzanne and Stephen,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Hello from Siem Reap! We arrived safely after an eleven hour journey, had dinner, and are now getting ready to go to sleep. Will write more tomorrow and will have many stories to share about your children’s wonderful experiences. Regards, Suzanne and Stephen

Posted On

07/7/08

Author

Suzanne and Stephen

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Greetings All,

After many hours of travel on bus, boat and taxi over two days the group arrived safe and sound in rural Kratie province. We’ve settled into life in the country contributing to everything that goes on in a Cambodian household. The group has spent time working in the rice fields, building rain water collection units of concrete, helped haul water, and everything else that they can assist with. When not doing service we’ve been spending time practicing our Khmer, and laughing a lot. Often we resort to gestures to communicate what we are thinking and what we would like to do. And thus, laughter frequently ensues from time spent playing communication charades with our host families. We’ve also enjoyed riding our bikes down the only road in town to visit the other students and leaders when time allows in the afternoons and evenings. Everyone is enjoying their stay in Cambodia thus far and we will give a complete update when we arrive in Siem Reap on Monday.

Sincerely,Benjamin

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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An update from Benjamin

Benjamin Tipton,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Greetings All, After many hours of travel on bus, boat and taxi over two days the group arrived safe and sound in rural Kratie province. We’ve settled into life in the country contributing to everything that goes on in a Cambodian household. The group has spent time working in the rice fields, building rain water […]

Posted On

07/5/08

Author

Benjamin Tipton

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Coconut dancers

And

Mekong River

Bi

Octopus scars

Dead spiders

Interesting fruit

Astronomical!

I wonder if

S-22

Really

Expresses

Apologies

Love

Lost for the

Young

Hot

Oth

Tho

[post_title] => Traveling Across-tic Cambodia [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => traveling-across-tic-cambodia [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2008-07-01 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=54321 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 466 [name] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 [slug] => nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 466 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 248 [count] => 21 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 29.1 [cat_ID] => 466 [category_count] => 21 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 [category_nicename] => nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008 [category_parent] => 248 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2008/nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008/ ) ) [category_links] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 )

Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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Traveling Across-tic Cambodia

Ben, Maddy, & Kyra,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Coconut dancers And Mekong River Bi Octopus scars Dead spiders Interesting fruit Astronomical! I wonder if S-22 Really Expresses Apologies Love Lost for the Young Hot Oth Tho

Posted On

07/1/08

Author

Ben, Maddy, & Kyra

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"Today, I lost my faith in humanity, and then gained it 10 times over."

When the group of students I was sitting with at the outdoor market noodle stand for dinner heard Zubin's summary of his day, they stopped eating and reflected quietly for a moment. One by one, they agreed with his statement and offered examples from their day to illustrate the sentiment. We started our day at the Killing Fields and ended it by dancing with joyful young Cambodian performers.

After a breakfast of rice noodle soup, we climbed into our Tuk Tuks and headed off to S21, the site where the Khmer Rouge held and tortured prisoners. We were met by our tour-guide Sam, who was imprisoned for three months before having to work in the fields during the 3+ year regime. He was a friendly man who spoke with great frankness about the torture and tragic deaths of thousands and thousands of his fellow countrymen. As we walked from one detention room to another and looked at the pictures of both the prisoners and their enforcers, your children asked thoughtful questions and were clearly moved by the history. After about an hour of learning at S21, we headed towards the Killing Fields. Once there, Sam continued sharing the country's collective history as well as his own personal experience. We stood by the mass graves and walked around the stupa filled with skulls - extremely sobering. Again, we were so taken by your children, their openess to learning, their inquisitive minds, and their deep sensitivity. While heading back to our Tuk Tuks, Ben and Sam walked together. Ben said, "You are a brave man." Stephen and I looked at each other, tears in our eyes.

Every Tuk Tuk had at least one chaperone on board as we headed to lunch. When we arrrived at our destination, we all commented that the conversations led by the students while riding through the city were heartfelt and insightful. Lunch was served at a guest house/shop/non-profit organization called NYEMO. This group trains women and children in handicrafts and cooking in order to give them skills that allow them to be self-sufficiant and keep them from, among other things, going into prostitution. We were able to purchase some of these goods before and after our delicious lunch of ginger fish, dandelion greens, noodles, rice, and eggplant. Since you will most likely all be getting some of these crafts, I will not go into detail about the creations!

Our busy day continued with another non-profit stop. This time we were able to learn about and purchase more souvenirs from a group called Rehab Crafts. The products created from recycled materials and local woodare entirely made by people with disabilities. The goal again is to give people who have lost limbs to landmines or who were born with a physical challenge, a chance to learn skills to earn a living. Needless to say, Naoki was very impressed with the commitment to recycle materials. Another inspiring organization.

We made a quick stop at a market to pick up some sarongs to wear during our homestay before meeting an instument builder. When we arrived at our destination, we were struck by the setting. I would liken the area to a slum but without the violence. I bring this up only so that you can try to visualize where we were. Walking through the narrow alleyways to the home of the master musician, we passed the tiny living space of the "Cambodian Ray Charles" - for those of you who saw The Flute Player. Unfortunately, we did not get to meet him as he was visiting family in the country-side. We took off our shoes and sat together and listened to several musicians play traditional Cambodian music. I do not recall the names of the instruments but I am sure Stephen and many of the students do. I would check in with them but everyone is asleep....After a brief concert, Kate had a chance to play one of the instruments - she sounded great!

Although the day contained more highlights than I can count, my favorite part happened in an apartment on the 3rd floor of a big housing development close to the musician's modest home. Our kids sat on the floor facing a group of dancers (about their age) and smiled at each other as Khmer was being translated by our trip leaders. We learned that this group has been dancing together for about ten years and that Cambodian Living Arts (also the group who supports the musicians) has been sponsoring them for the past five years or so. The troupe will be performing in Scotland in a few weeks. The polite sharing of information ended and the tiny room quickly turned into a performance hall. Within moments, the Cambodian dancers and singers had us clapping along and smiling as their high energy, beautifully choreographed traditional dances entertained us. I looked around at your children and they were beaming. The drumming and graceful movements inspired us to join in on the dancing when they made the offer. Words cannot describe the feeling in this small room, in this small country, which suddenly turned our world into a small planet. When all the children, American and Cambodian alike, linked arms in a cirlce and sang and swayed to "Let There Be Peace On Earth," we all knew that for that moment, something magical was happening.

In high spirits, we boarded our Tuk Tuks and as we rode through the streets of PP, Max, Colton, Kate, and Katherine sang "Don't Worry About a Thing" in full voices, bringing smiles to all those who rode by on their motorbikes.

At dinner, Kyra mentioned that she didn't think that the Killing Fields made as full an impact on her as she imagined it should. Others agreed that since they have never come close to anything quite like it, there is not much for them to relate to. I nodded, knowing that in the years to come the impact this trip made on them will become clearer and clearer.

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Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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Day Three

Suzanne,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

"Today, I lost my faith in humanity, and then gained it 10 times over." When the group of students I was sitting with at the outdoor market noodle stand for dinner heard Zubin’s summary of his day, they stopped eating and reflected quietly for a moment. One by one, they agreed with his statement and […]

Posted On

06/30/08

Author

Suzanne

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    [post_content] => 

We've had some really freaking delicious food here. I mean, there were lots of noodles, and fried things, and Dragonfruit smoothies. That's not even counting the countless bottles of water drank by our group as a whole.

[post_title] => NOODLES [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => noodles [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2008-06-30 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=54410 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 466 [name] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 [slug] => nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 466 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 248 [count] => 21 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 29.1 [cat_ID] => 466 [category_count] => 21 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 [category_nicename] => nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008 [category_parent] => 248 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2008/nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008/ ) ) [category_links] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 )

Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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NOODLES

Daniel, Ben, and (A)Lexi(s),Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

We’ve had some really freaking delicious food here. I mean, there were lots of noodles, and fried things, and Dragonfruit smoothies. That’s not even counting the countless bottles of water drank by our group as a whole.

Posted On

06/30/08

Author

Daniel, Ben, and (A)Lexi(s)

WP_Post Object
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    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2008-06-29 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Wow, we've done so much already we could go home today and feel successful!

Yesterday after a breakfast of hot noodle soup at a nearby restaurant (incongrously showing the movie Beloved with Oprah Winfrey), we took two vans toward the birthplace of our Cambodian guide, Rithy.

Rithy grew up on an island near Phnom Penh called Koh Khsach Tunlea (Sa-ang District in Kandal Province) and has ambition to be Prime Minister of Cambodia. No kidding. But he's just 21 now so he has another fourteen years to wait. In the meantime he hasset upan organization to tackle the garbage problem in Cambodia (see his website ProCambodia.com).

After taking a platform ferry to the island, we traveled in oxcarts to Rithy's home, met his wonderful family, and visited a special temple (wat) where a soothing breeze cooled us off. There our instructors guided us on a discussion of different metaphorical "zones" we will be passing through during our trip. The green zone is a one in which we feel safe and comfortable; yellow is the zone of challenge and learning; red is the overwhelming zone of panic and system shut-down. We discussed strategies for escaping from the red zone and also moving away from the green zone to get the most out of our experience. This language has already become a integral part of our experience (both seriously and humorously).

We took the oxcarts back to Rithy's home where his family had prepared a feast for us. Already we are trying delicious new fruits. Daniela and Benjamin led another discussion about the role of NGOs and the qualities of a healthy village. Kids brought up great issues as they sipped the juice from their freshly opened coconuts. Then we visited another Wat to participate in a trash collection effort. We filled two huge bags with plastic refuse and brought them to the nearby dump. Rithy explained that our presence on the island participating in this clean-up project willmotivate the island's residents to continue taking care of their environment.

OK. Oxcarts back to the ferry. Ferry to vans. Vans back to hotel and a supper out at the nearby market of rice porridge (called something like Baw Baw). Most of us went to sleep after a delicious dinner and fruit shake made from rambutan, pineapple, and dragonfruit. Some of us got up to watch Spain beat German 1-0.

Now we are starting to congregate for breakfast and another compelling experience. More later!

Stephen & Suzanne

[post_title] => Phnomenal first day! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => phnomenal-first-day [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2008-06-29 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=54446 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 466 [name] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 [slug] => nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 466 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 248 [count] => 21 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 29.1 [cat_ID] => 466 [category_count] => 21 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 [category_nicename] => nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008 [category_parent] => 248 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2008/nueva-custom-cambodia-summer-2008/ ) ) [category_links] => Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008 )

Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

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Phnomenal first day!

Stephen Lessard,Nueva Custom Cambodia, Summer 2008

Description

Wow, we’ve done so much already we could go home today and feel successful! Yesterday after a breakfast of hot noodle soup at a nearby restaurant (incongrously showing the movie Beloved with Oprah Winfrey), we took two vans toward the birthplace of our Cambodian guide, Rithy. Rithy grew up on an island near Phnom Penh […]

Posted On

06/29/08

Author

Stephen Lessard

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