Monday, October 4, 2010

the young, upper middle class of phnom penh

so, i've been at this expat cafe several hours now, mooching off their free super fast internet, and just met a young married khmer couple. they are sitting across from me and i just couldn't help but notice how un-khmer they were. they were very kissy face, very pda! their pda is just so very strange to me. even the way the husband treated his wife was very genial, moreover, respectful. he didn't eat before her, he waited for her and had her take the first bite. so i couldn't but help but ask them if they were married, because they were young looking. i found out that they've been married for 5+ years now with a 5 year old son. he is a custom's officer and she works in business. their son is going to a good private school in the capital, and no doubt will learn english.

this encounter is just so fascinating. while phnom penh has areas that make you wonder, "really, this is the capital?" having social encounters like the one i just mentioned above really makes me believe that cambodia is on its way to developing. i can't say for certain what kind of development it will experience, but withing the next 50 years, this country will experience significant. but of course, its inevitable that any developing country will experience development within a 50 year span.

i just had to mention this because since being here and living out in the provinces, most times it feels almost hopeless. i wonder often, is it possible for khmer people to think about their existence and have a desire to improve their lives.

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