Any other ex-expat kids around?

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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby Khmerized » Sat Apr 27, 2013 3:56 am

Thanks everyone, I truly appreciate the kind words. I was a tad hesitant before clicking the "post" button as I do have a history of writing shit that I tend to regret later, but I think these notes may offer a perspective on living here that not many have had a chance to experience, so click I did.

I actually couldn't sleep knowing I had not proof-read it (how fucked is that?) so I edited it and corrected everything I could find for clarity, ease of reading and acceptable grammar, or at least I hope so.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby kinard » Sat Apr 27, 2013 4:09 am

Well, this was a long time coming and worth the wait! You had touched lightly on a few things previously, eg; going to the Chenla cinema on a school trip etc..

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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby DetroitMuscle » Sat Apr 27, 2013 4:31 am

Wow Khmerized!!! When I asked you to elaborate, I never expected that you would come back with such a great article! Front page worthy indeed. I honestly felt like I was reading a chapter of an ex-pat's memoirs, but not that of a 23 year old!!! At 23 years young, you seem to have stories to tell that 99.9% of OUR generation have not even come close to experiencing. Your writing style is pretty good as well! Have you ever thought about sharing your experiences with some medium besides Khmer440? Fuck, publish an E-Book or something. I would buy it!

If you are 23 years young with all of this to say, I can only imagine what it would be like hearing what you have to say when you are 50 years old.

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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby vladimir » Sat Apr 27, 2013 5:53 am

Dude!

Amazing, You're very good with a camera, perhaps better with a pen. Pursue it. Perhaps combine the two?
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby RobW » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:16 am

Chapeau off.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby Hemingway » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:27 am

Great post. And I agree that it is better than most front pages articles.One of the interesting things about the LFRD (and any other French school abroad for that matter) is that by law they have to take any student whose nationality is French, regardless of whether the parents can afford the fees or not (if they can't the French embassy will pay some or all the school fees). It creates a microcosm that you can't find in other schools.

There was this kid whose mother was some country bumpkin who married an elderly French dude and by all accounts they all lived happily together at the further outskirts of PP. When the dude died, the embassy got wind of the kid and offered to take her free of charge. Good intentions and all, but the problem was that the family was utterly penniless. So they may not have had to pay the school fees, but they still couldn't afford the school lunches. Fine, said the school, school lunches will be free. Which is great but the mother couldn't afford the tuk tuk rides everyday back and forth. So she would come in the morning to bring the kid and then proceed to sit on the benches opposite the school for the whole school day (from 8 till 4pm) and then go home. Fine, said the school, and they actually bought her a cheap motorcycle (or it was donated by one of the teachers). So that was solved, but the kid was lost. She didn't speak French but was in second grade and was expected to read, write and know how to navigate the insanely convoluted rules of French grammar. Fine, said the school, we will get a tutor free of charge.

In the same classroom that the kid attended was the grandson (or great grandson, it's easy to lose track) of King Sihanouk. Ironically, that kid didn't know how to speak Khmer despite being Khmer royalty. But children always find a way to go past language barriers and so the two kids played, worked and laughed together, regardless of backgrounds. You don't get that at iCan, ISPP or NIS.

So here's to Lycée Descartes and its decaying buildings, which still holds the most diverse student crowd of all PP.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby Playboy » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:56 am

Khmerized wrote: ... a lot ! ...

I hate it when I like things from the French, it leaves me feeling confused and slightly dirty - but not in a good way.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby Playboy » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:59 am

Khmerized wrote: ...
    - The Military Kids:
Their parents are in the French army (Playboy, take it easy)


Image


Image
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby ricecakes » Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:32 am

Best post ever on 440 without a doubt.

Write a movie script.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby teamone » Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:40 am

Longest post ever, print it as a book and give it to the kids to sell on the Riverside, lots of nuggets in there for the curious visitors here.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby keeping_it_riel » Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:40 am

ricecakes wrote:Best post ever on 440 without a doubt.

Write a movie script.


I was thinking that myself. It would make a great movie.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby Dad » Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:03 am

Great read, thanks!
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby marwood » Sat Apr 27, 2013 12:19 pm

Good one.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby Khmerized » Sat Apr 27, 2013 4:03 pm

Hemingway wrote:Great post. And I agree that it is better than most front pages articles.One of the interesting things about the LFRD (and any other French school abroad for that matter) is that by law they have to take any student whose nationality is French, regardless of whether the parents can afford the fees or not (if they can't the French embassy will pay some or all the school fees). It creates a microcosm that you can't find in other schools.

There was this kid whose mother was some country bumpkin who married an elderly French dude and by all accounts they all lived happily together at the further outskirts of PP. When the dude died, the embassy got wind of the kid and offered to take her free of charge. Good intentions and all, but the problem was that the family was utterly penniless. So they may not have had to pay the school fees, but they still couldn't afford the school lunches. Fine, said the school, school lunches will be free. Which is great but the mother couldn't afford the tuk tuk rides everyday back and forth. So she would come in the morning to bring the kid and then proceed to sit on the benches opposite the school for the whole school day (from 8 till 4pm) and then go home. Fine, said the school, and they actually bought her a cheap motorcycle (or it was donated by one of the teachers). So that was solved, but the kid was lost. She didn't speak French but was in second grade and was expected to read, write and know how to navigate the insanely convoluted rules of French grammar. Fine, said the school, we will get a tutor free of charge.

In the same classroom that the kid attended was the grandson (or great grandson, it's easy to lose track) of King Sihanouk. Ironically, that kid didn't know how to speak Khmer despite being Khmer royalty. But children always find a way to go past language barriers and so the two kids played, worked and laughed together, regardless of backgrounds. You don't get that at iCan, ISPP or NIS.

So here's to Lycée Descartes and its decaying buildings, which still holds the most diverse student crowd of all PP.


That's a cool story. I can totally see the embassy going to great length to make sure that kid could get a decent education. There are many, many khmers who arrive at LFRD without speaking a word of French (or English, for that matter), and in fact many of the bar kids I was talking about were simply pushed into the classroom without understanding a word of what was going on. After a year, they start getting the hang of it, and after 3 or more years, their French is impeccable. I admire them a lot for that, it can't be an easy situation. It's amazing to hear their Parisian accent, even though they've never actually been to Paris.
Just one thing I have to say: LFRD buildings are not decaying. They are spending enormous amounts of money on renovations and expansion. When I was there, I overheard the director saying that she expected LFRD to become one of the largest international schools in the region within 10 years.
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Re: Any other ex-expat kids around?

Postby cambod » Sat Apr 27, 2013 4:13 pm

Khmerized wrote: I overheard the director saying that she expected LFRD to become one of the largest international schools in the region within 10 years.


....right after Sihanoukville becomes one of the busiest airports in SEasia.
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