For some reason, when I went to bed at 9.30pm last night I had the feeling I needed to set my alarm clock for 6.15 the next morning.
When I was still awake at 11.30pm, switching it off seemed like a good idea and when I woke at 1.30am after nodding off for an hour it was the only sane thing to do – so switch it off I did.
I then slept fitfully until 6am when I found myself pretty much wide awake. I lay listening to the world waking up for a bit and then decided to get up, go out and get breakfast. As I came back in from getting my random pork and pineapple rice wrapped in a banana leaf thing (pic on Instagram @anewlifeinflipflops if you’re interested *Warning* some of my friends with a dirty mind appear to think it looks rude!!!).
I noticed 3 people sitting in reception and felt compelled to approach them. It turns out they were waiting for the VSO pick up which was due in – wait for it – 2 minutes. OO errr missus – it appears I’m psychic.
I asked them to hang on whilst I ran back to get my things and about 5 minutes later we were in a Tuktuk and on our way.
En route my colleagues filled me in on their background whilst I grinned inanely mainly as I could hardly hear most of what they said over the din of the traffic.
Once at the office it soon became apparent that, whilst I was expected, there hadn’t really been any sort of effort made to get me there or to decide what I would do when I did arrive.
So, the poor Khmer language and culture teacher was dumped with me and I joined my new found friends, Tuti, Kees & Gloria, learning how to go shopping at the market.
In the style of all great language lessons it involved all 4 of us pronouncing the same thing differently and each being praised emphatically by our very patient teacher. I now know the names of lots of fruit and vegetables – unfortunately most of the ones I actually like are totally unpronounceable – and can count to 100 very slowly and with frequent expletives interspersed as I return to my notes to yet again try to remember how to say 3!
Lunch was pork fried rice in a Thai restaurant/hairdressers where the menu was a photo album and the shelves were stacked with snail face gel, tomato hair paste and shrimp pot noodles.
The least said about the test of my diplomacy & patience in the afternoon the better – suffice to say the challenge came from a direction I wasn’t expecting, was disappointing to experience and has left a sour taste. I really appreciate those of you who received vitriolic text rants about said person as soon as I was free! I think the word cock womble was used in at least one of them but believe me it wasn’t the only derogatory term that came to mind J
I’ve ended by day with my new friends eating laklak beef and rice at a restaurant down the road whilst reflecting on our experiences to date all to a back drop of a fabulous electrical storm.
The trash TV is too bad even for my low standards this evening, so it’s back to my book ‘100 days of solitude’.
My alarm is set for 6am and fingers crossed for a good night sleep to prepare me for whatever fun and games tomorrow brings..