Well, I’m back home. It only took 31 hours from the time I left Phnom Penh to arrive safely in the Salt Lake Valley. My final moments in Cambodia were more than memorable. Here’s a quick recap of my final moments in Cambodia:
With my final full day in Cambodia I went back to Bayon with my friend Rachael and we rode an elephant – fulfilling an item on my Impossible List. The ride was a bit bumpy, but definitely worth it. I felt like a Cambodian king atop the mighty beast, looking down on all the ‘little people.’
My last day in Cambodia was a sad day. Fortunately, it was made a little less sad by a final lunch with friends. We had a great lunch at a Cambodian buffet. Ultimately, my last day in Cambodia finished the way my first one did: the first two CKS students I met (Mey Kaing and Hoy Hongry) were the last two that I said goodbye to. It was also the same members of my wife’s family who picked me up and dropped me off. It all seemed just so poetic somehow.
I also wanted to review the progress I made on my goals for Cambodia, and admittedly I didn’t do as well as I would have liked. For starters, my volunteering efforts did not go as planned – being an English teacher just didn’t pan out. I didn’t go running nearly as often as I would have liked, but I did do a fair amount of walking. My knowledge of Cambodia and its issues grew exponentially, my language got bit better (if I do say so myself), and I made new connections with great people. However, and most importantly, I put together a solid effort at research, and while it may not be publishable I learned a great deal about conducting research and what I need to do to be a better researcher.
My time in Cambodia was great, but I’m definitely happy to be back with my wife and family, getting ready for our next adventure!!!