Returning to Phnom Penh last week after three weeks away I was struck by the change in the sunrise – turns out it is still rising later here and I really noticed it on my morning commute. I love watching the city wake up- cleaning up from the previous night, sweeping up- sometimes into the street, sometimes into bins. People setting up their shops- hauling products out front. I pass innumerable KTVs (Gooogle it- karaoke is big business here), tons of cafes, tiny specialty shops selling anything from floor tiles to tires. When I leave home just after 6AM there is very little traffic- the city is just waking up.
Contrast that with this afternoon. Today I left school a bit earlier than usual and headed to the Russian Market area for a pedicure. It is a bustling area with a mix of old and new- small boutiques stand side by side with traditional workshops. I opted to walk home- walking in Southeast Asian cities is always an adventure- sidewalks come and go, traffic is BUSY, motorcycles do not bother themselves with lanes- they zig and zag everywhere. You find your self having to walk far out into the street in places, as vehicles stop and/or park at will. I have a bit of a sense of direction in this part of the city- generally, even numbered streets run east- west, while odd numbered streets run north-south. I knew as I headed out I would hit a cross street that would take me closer to home, or if I was heading in the opposite direction I would be on a street with lots of restaurants and I was hungry. As it turns out I headed for home and weighed dinner options as I dodged danger. The streets were crowded and I had to be on full alert. As I got to my street the construction sites were just closing down and the city was heading toward nighttime mode.
It is easy for me to love this city!
Zhi Hong slices too!