A Conversation with Charlotte

It has been a hard week but this talk with Charlotte is why it’s good that the girls are here. Growing up in Brazil shaped me, growing up here is shaping them. Charlotte: The doctor said that my leg might get cut off if there’s an infection. Me: Yes, but that probably won’t happen to…

Bike Injury

On Saturday last week, Charlotte and I had a lovely daddy-daughter outing around Phnom Penh. We stopped by the office on the way home to pick up a bike and, as the guard did some last minute maintenance on it, Charlotte took off her shoes. This is where I messed up – as we started…

The week of broken things

The last 5 days have been full of brokenness.  It started last Friday.  In my eagerness to set up the partner meeting, I moved a portion of the glass table by myself.  My sweaty hands slipped and glass fell hard on my leg, cutting into my shin in two places, leaving spectacular bloody trails all…

Juniper Tree

Two weeks ago we stayed at Juniper Tree, a Christian retreat center in Chiang Mai, Thailand.  Shockingly green with grass and trees and wood colors after the red-dusted grey of Phnom Penh, the center contains multiple tree-houses, a dining hall, library, prayer room, meeting room and pool.  It’s easy to guess which of these the…

Durian

The first time I had durian I was told, “it smells like hell but tastes like heaven.” Unfortunately that wasn’t the case. It tasted like a rotten sweet onion. This was in Ohio in the year leading up to my first cross cultural trip to Viet Nam. Because of that experience I avoided eating durian…

So Dengue Fever

To conclude the story of Ugh Food Poisoning and Probably Not Food Poisoning… After the tests came back the Doctor concluded that I did have Dengue Fever. It has been a long recovery – lots of muscle pain, fatigue, and headaches. But, after a month, I’m finally feeling close to normal again. Dengue is a…

Charlotte and Victor Playing Chess

The Dengue fatigue hit me hard this evening and I’ve been up in the bedroom resting. When I came down to get some water I was surprised/delighted to see Charlotte playing Chess with Victor – one of the YAMEN participants from Kenya. I taught her how to play last year but never expected her to…

Why do so many Cambodians have diabetes?

Cambodians have surprisingly high rates of diabetes. Why? Is it because they put a lot of sugar in their coffee? This is what one expatriate told me when I mentioned that I was excited to have Cambodian coffee again. To paraphrase “Be careful, you’ll get diabetes.” I normally drink my coffee black so it’s a…

Wounds take a long time to heal here

Wounds take a long time to heal here.  A scratch on the skin of my strong and healthy children used to heal within a day or two in the United States.  Here, it’s at least a week, sometimes more.  Perhaps it’s the air quality as thousands of cars, motos and tuk-tuks pump unregulated toxins into…

Probably not food poisoning

I’ve had food poisoning a lot in my life, as noted in my last post, so I’m familiar with the symptoms by now. This latest bout started off feeling like an extreme case of it. The nausea, fever, and vomiting lasted around 48 hours. But the diarrhea (and associated lightheadedness/weakness) has continued since. That’s way…