Tag Archives: expat life


Quick Sunday Dinners 1: The Rising Sun

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The concept of the traditional English Sunday roast is all rather ho-hum to the septic tanks and colonials , but it’s a sacred ritual for those of us from, “This royal throne of kings, this scepter’d isle, This earth of…

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Another Cup of Coffee for the Phnom Penh Road

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I rarely get more than five hours sleep in a stretch so I need exactly three large cups of coffee to get me going in the morning. By coffee I mean the black stuff, not a coffee-milk, or a macadamia-carmel…

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Street Fighting Techniques in Cambodia

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I have only witnessed a handful of street fighting incidents or violence in my decade here in Cambodia. A couple were simply mentally unstable people going off, like one night near Psah Kandal where a guy was swinging around a…

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Gawping at Death in Cambodia

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I saw my first corpse at the age of about five. One of the local teens, who I knew to hang out with, and who I remember sometimes making a bit of a ruckus with his friends at night, was…

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Phnom Penh Pet Peeves

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Many people arrive on these shores and feel instantly enamored by the place, and as they settle in are often ‘rosy-eyed’ and forgiving towards any unfamiliar customs or behavior they encounter. It is only far later, when everything becomes commonplace…

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From Cambodia to the London Riots in a Day

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I’ve been asked to write a little reflection on my first impression on returning ‘home’ to England after being settled for seven years in Cambodia. Had it been any other time and any other place, this might have been some…

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Water Festival Memories

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On the Saturday afternoon of Water Festival a couple of years back, once it was cool enough to emerge into the late afternoon sun and well after the day’s competitive paddle up and down the city’s waterway had concluded, I’d…

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Al Rockoff, Gerard Depardieu, Monsieur Brick etc

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A possibly apocryphal tale making the rounds concerned Al Rockoff and the editors at the Phnom Penh Post. As everyone knows, Al deprecates the way he was portrayed by John Malkovich in The Killing Fields. Not hard to see why—it…

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Cambodia’s Long Journey Towards ‘Relative’ Normality

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Modern residency units in Phnom Penh now come in a variety of shapes and sizes and prices, but back in the early 1990s when UNTAC invaded town, it rapidly became apparent that there weren’t many units available that any foreigners…

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‘Going Native’ in Cambodia

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After living in Cambodia for a few years, it is considered quite normal for a foreigner to subconsciously take on many of the cultural traits of the indigenous host community in his or her adopted homeland. Indeed, some foreigners ,…

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