Getting Down and Dirty

As the title implies, today was the first day of hard work for the whole team and we really got down and dirty to get the job done.

The day started with a sumptuous buffet breakfast at the hotel before we went to the orphanage and started the massive job of cleaning up the girls’ dormitory. Our main enemy: mouldy junk, pungent mould, mice, rats, cockroaches, lizards, rubbish, dust, leftover food in the room. Our greatest enemy: ourselves and our mentalities.

Throughout this trip, many of us have already gradually stepped out of our comfort zones. The very fact that we have stepped onto this soil and into this orphanage was already a step of faith. Everything else is just a great bonus. Whether it was fear of cockroaches, lizards, filth, strangers, language barriers, awkwardness, all of us in some ways have stepped out in courage to conquer our fears. Little by little, day by day, decision by decision.

The orphans have taught us that in life, we cannot always choose our situation but we can choose the way we face up to it. Whether it was mopping, scrubbing floors, wiping dusty windows, painting, working with tools and nails, many of us have stepped up bravely to do things that textbooks and classroom education have not taught us. Yet we have tried our best to break out of our comfort zone and give our best to these kids, who deserve a much better shot at life. Parents, if you areΒ  reading this, ask your child when he/she returns home about the housework they have done. Most of them would testify that they did more housework here than they ever did in their lives. I urge you to continue the learning journey with them.

Besides cleaning the girls’ dormitory, we also started some preparation work on erecting a donated basketball post. You will see the digging in preparation for cement work tomorrow, where we hope to hold up the heavy post in loose sandy soil with cement. This is gonna be a grand and ambitious project.

Finally, we also cleaned the exterior of the boys’ dormitory and started painting the windows and doors. We hope to eventually finish painting the entire exterior by this thursday, to give it a livelier facade.

We ended off the day with a break from local cuisine and tried cambodian fast food in the form of Lucky Burger. We had a good dinner and hillarious team sharing afterwards.

The team is now much more bonded and it once again testifies to the reflection from last trip that pre-trip preparation can only go so far in preparing the team theoretically. It is really the experience here that changes and bonds the team, encouraging them to be more serious about the work we are doing for the orphans. More orphans have also started to help us today. We hope to continue to engage their help so that they take greater ownership of the project!

More photos here.

This entry was posted in June 2010 Serve Cambodia Trip. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Getting Down and Dirty

  1. Yin Shan says:

    Omg.. I see soughtlei! and darm and bunrong and many more…
    I miss them so much! 😦 Wish i was there right now.
    Hope they’ve been doing well. They look taller! hahaha.
    John, have you pass to soughtlei my letter? πŸ™‚

    And, great job guys! Am looking forward to see the end results.. πŸ˜€

    • Wah u still rem their names haha. It’s ok you can come soon in dec. they are already looking forward. Yes i think they are slightly taller, but just slightly. Pierre dyed his harid and he admitted it was because he wanted to look more handsome (lor ohr) haha.

      Yes i have passed your letter to soughtlei on the first day, along with burong’s letter. I think i will use the translator (anna) to remind them to try to reply the letters again haha.

      Cheers! ANd thanks once again for the wonderful blog design. It has received rave reviews from this trip’s participants

      • Yin Shan says:

        Thanks John! πŸ˜€

        Hahaha where did Pierre learned to dye his hair from? Glad to hear that everyone’s growing healthily~

        Haha thank you πŸ™‚

      • Hmm yahor i seriously dunno how he got his hair dyed. I dunt think he did it himself man, there was another orphans who also dyed his hair heheh.

        I prefer his old jet black hair with johnson’s baby shampoo smell tho haha

  2. Yin Shan says:

    Hahaha Johnson’s baby shampoo smell! Don’t worry his black hair will grow back!
    Omg I’ve seen the latest post and i see soughtlei’s photos~ Ahhh πŸ˜€
    And i’m looking forward to see the basketball posts set up too! hahahaha
    & pierre looks cute in your boots! LOL

  3. Wei Chen says:

    woah, i am missing vichet so badly alrdy! post mre of his pictures HAHA spammmm. Dec i may not be able to go leh, my parents dont allow!

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