Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Gaelic Khmer

Alright, I finally found the ultimate in uniqueness. Certainly in Cambodia, and probably in the world I know.

I've only been able to use the internet at length from a bar on pub street called Molly Malones (http://www.mollymalonescambodia.com/). If you look at the web site, I'm right now sitting at the upstairs table you can see in the center picture, when you see the pub. As the name implies, and the website says, its Siem Reaps only authentic Irish pub. I sat here yesterday doing emails and posting while I listened to two hours of vintage Beatles music and Irish folksongs.

When I got ready to leave and was paying my bill I started chatting with the barmaid, a young Khmer girl. I told her I really liked the choice in music and she said everyone liked the older stuff. She asked if I was Irish and I said I was part Irish. Then she started to say stuff to me in Gaelic.

Now, I've been to Ireland. And most of the people who LIVE there can't speak Gaelic. And here I am, standing in the middle of Cambodia listening to a teenaged Khmer girl talk to me in a language that is mostly dead and spoken only in Ireland and the UK.

I was impressed. This country is really moving ahead.

When we were first setting up CSHD we had to open a bank account, so we had somewhere, other than Aki Ra's mattress, to keep our money. We couldn't open an account in CSHD's name as we weren't yet a 'registered' company, so we opened it in Aki Ra's name. Now that we are registered we all headed down to the local ANZ Bank to open up an account for CSHD. Two hours later we finally had it done. Two trips back to the office for paperwork we didn't have with us and countless trips to the 'back room' to figure out what to do eventually left us with a brand new bank account. I opened it with some of the money you good people have donated. I kept about $1,500 out since we were going shopping for stuff later in the day.

We headed off to the Central Market to buy tools, uniforms, hammocks and other sort and sundry items we can't get when we're in the jungle. It was interesting to watch Pov and Aki Ra haggle with each and every shop owner. Even the ones we've dealt with before. One of them brought a chair out for the 'old man' (me) to sit in. I'd describe it best as the kind you used in kindergarten. I got into it, not quite sure I'd ever get out again. I did, which makes me think that maybe my early morning exercise routine is doing me a little bit of good.

I get up at 6am every morning and walk 'crisply', as the English say, around town and back to my guesthouse for a breakfast of fried eggs and coffee. Nicely done too, I might say.

Well, I'm back to the Museum tomorrow and then on to Phnom Penh on Thursday to try and finally get the goods taken care of that I shipped there in July. A bit more than annoying.
Off to bed now.

1 comment:

Jimbo said...

The world is getting smaller everyday my friend.