A Week in the Life…
Welcome back to all my followers of this here blog. It’s been a hot minute since I have written a blog but here I am back at it. The reason I have been a little quiet is because I have gotten into a nice routine, a groove (see title) if you will. I am going to attempt to put you in my shoes and show you a few pictures along the way to get you to understand what my life looks like from day to day.
As many of you know already I have two different work placements that allow me a good mix of work throughout my day to day life. One site placement at an NGO, Life With Dignity (LWD), typically occupies my mornings during the week. I go to and from work by bicycle, braving the crowded streets of Phnom Penh for 30 minutes at a time. Below is a picture of my bicycle, the view from the courtyard outside my office and a view of my desk at work.
Rice is a staple of Cambodia and thus I eat it 2 or 3 times a day. However for breakfast I sometimes like to eat some bread and thus I eat some sandwich street food. They are delicious. Pictured below is the stand where I get them and the sandwich itself.
My other site placement is with the Lutheran Church in Cambodia (LCC) which is also the church that I live at. This occupies my time in the afternoon and night time during the week and week. Primarily my duties revolve around teaching English to some of the University students that live at the church along with me. I teach the advanced classes both in the afternoon (Tuesday-Thursday) and at night (Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.) When I have time in the afternoon I also spend a little bit of time working in the office with various tasks, sometimes doing write ups for the church about events and sometimes doing scheduling or whatever else needs to be done. Pictured below is the church office and the two classrooms that I can sometimes switch between.
As a resident of the Hostel there are three events where attendance is strongly encouraged during the week. All of them take place in the common space on the bottom floor. Tuesday nights is a weekly meeting and history of the bible course taught by one of the church administrators from Singapore, Chak Mun. We have gone from the stories in Genesis and followed a chronological timeline thus far in which we just finished discussing David. Pictured below the students gather for this weekly lesson.
Sometimes our Tuesday nights are turned into prayer meetings in which we take some time to pray for things we are thankful for or things we might require a little support in. Pictured below is one such night.
The second event of the week takes place on Friday and is a more formal bible study led by the pastors and support staff of LCC. Both Tuesday and Friday each week start with us singing some songs and praising the lord. Pictured below are a few students leading us in song.
On Saturday’s I have the morning off and the afternoon I go into the office at the church for a little bit if people are around. On Saturday nights I head across town on my bike and play basketball for 2 or 3 hours. Recently I have been playing with a large group of Filipino Cambodians who have accepted me as one of their own. Pictured below is the basketball court that I play at, as well as the soccer fields that are at the same complex. This is what most soccer fields look like in Phnom Penh. With both Basketball and Soccer you just pay for the water if you lose and split the cost of the field rental evenly. Usually between 2 and 3 dollars per 2 hours.
On Sunday’s I spend my time in the morning worshipping with the fellow students and community members in church. Pictured below are a few photos from church services.
In the afternoon on Sunday’s I participate in an outreach program in a village northeast of Phnom Penh called Kampong Cham. Most of the time I am tasked with working with one of the students in their kids programming. I help lead games and recently have been tasked with giving a quick children’s sermon. Other times I accompany Pastor Vibol as he does some more direct outreach to the members of the village who may not know much if anything about Christianity. Pictured below are some of the kids from the village. Bonus: A picture of me enjoying playing some soccer with some of the kids from the village.
Pictured above is Pastor Vibol leading a man and his wife in prayer.
Sometimes on Sunday nights I am able to help out with the church football (read soccer) team. Pictured below are the students and I after one of our practices.
If I don’t have any responsibilities for the church one of my new favorite things to do is attend the kick boxing matches that take place at either of the two local tv stations. Entrance is free and if you are a foreigner like me you are typically escorted to the best seats in the house. Thankfully they let me bring my friends along so I don’t have to sit alone. Pictured above is the view from one of the most thrilling boxing nights I have been to.
Hope you enjoyed a little glimpse into my weekly life. The joy of living in Cambodia is that this is a routine and more often than not I am thrown a little out of my routine by spontaneous work trips, church outings or fun with friends. However when these weeks happen they go quickly as if time is moving at light speed. Keep an eye out for another blog post coming in the next week. Til next time…