Have you ever done something so many times that it becomes second nature? You don’t even think twice about doing it? Take, for example, the way you brew your coffee in the morning. Or your drive to work. These things seem obviously simple to you. Until someone else enters your life, and views these things from a lens that completely blows your mind.
Going home to Wisconsin for Christmas, getting lunch at the local cafe is so routine for my father, they start making his salad before he walks in the door. For me, it was a flurry for colors, smells, and tastes I never experience the other 364 days of the year. Not to mention the excessive amount of cheese that is present on every Wisconsin plate.
So it is with Cambodia. When my friends and family come visit, they are amazed by things that I view as my day-to-day life. Take, for example, dodging motos when crossing the street. Or ordering lemon when you want lime. (Don’t ask.)
My aunt and her friends visited this past month, and it was a total blast. We had so much fun exploring Cambodia, and I love any excuse to play tourist. My aunt is one of the best photographers I know, so I asked to steal some of her photos for my blog. (Seriously, she gets one of her photos in her annual work calendar every year!)
So, here you go. Cambodia from another pair of eyes.
The view from my rooftop in the Russian Market neighborhood. If you’ve ever been here, you can see White Linen Boutique Guesthouse in the bottom center. (The lavender colored building.)
Walking through the Russian Market.
The meat venders of the Russian Market.
Fruit outside the Russian Market. (As if you needed any more evidence that the Russian Market is one of the best in Phnom Penh!)
The famous Saraman curry at Rikitikitavi in Kampot. Saraman curry is a special Cambodian curry that is not easy to come by. It is very, very rich and very flavorful. The primary ingredients are dry roasted coconut, shallots, garlic, cinnamon, and a lot of yum.
My friend Anna snuck down to Kampot with us for a weekend. We woke up nice and early to get a yoga session in with the sunrise. Little did I know, my aunt snapped a great photo!
Browsing the crab market.
On the drive home from Kep, we passed at least thirty busses carrying young women. Sadly, we deduced they were being taken home from their factory shifts. Check the label of your shirt right now. Does it say, “Made in Cambodia”?
I love all these pictures for so many reasons. My aunt takes a fantastic photograph, and it is a reminder of how beautiful this country is that I have come to call home.
Check back soon for the next blog, in which I give you yet another tour of Phnom Penh!