I have been in Cambodia for almost six whole months at this point. I should be able to communicate in the Khmer language; however, this is not the case. I have no excuses. I work with a mainly Khmer staff that I’m sure would be happy to teach me. I have the tuk-tuk drivers downstairs. There is all of the Khmer people I interact with in everyday situations: servers, cashiers, and drivers, at the market and the shopkeepers. Plus, it would be nice to make some friends that are Khmer and I think the only way that is possible is to learn their language. The Khmer language is not all that difficult grammatically. It is, however, difficult to pronounce, at least for me. Everyone enjoys helping you learn Khmer. They are super encouraging and easy-going about the task. I am going to put forth a real effort to be able to speak Khmer from this point out. After only a week of trying a little bit, it seems easier and less intimidating to speak to people in Khmer.
On a different note, I had a wonderful morning. A roommate and I walked down to Wat Phnom and saw monkeys and the US Embassy. We were going to wait in line to get tickets for a 4th of July party that the embassy is throwing. We were discouraged after only a few minutes of waiting, however, and decided that we could throw our own 4th of July party.
Then we walked to Phsar Kandal. Speaking of my attempt at eating more vegan food, I got bananas to freeze and make “ice-cream” out of. That is dessert this evening! It started raining while we were in the market and it was awesome how the rain came through the roof and how the people react. They just calmly cover their items up and start sweeping the trash out with the rainwater. We were caught in the market for a good half hour. It was great. We met some little kids who were excited to talk to us in English and we played with them for a while. The market is still one of my favorite things about Cambodia.