August 22nd 2009 started out as a wonderful day. The sun was shining and I had a really great lesson planned out for my last day of Practicum. I started the day as usual, had breakfast at a restaurant near the market, downed two coffees, and set off for school. School was great and my lesson went off without too many hitches. Myself and two other Peace Corps Trainees handed out the certificates of completion to the students (along with some delicious candy) and called it done. Don't get me wrong, I definitely believe that the six days of Practicum teaching are beneficial, but after leaving that classroom at noon on Saturay I couldn't be happier that it was over. Another Peace Corps trainee, Cooper, and I decided to forego the normal, safe backroad route to our host family's houses and to instead take the busy road so we could check if our friends were at the Tela (the blessed air-conditioned gas station) celebrating the end of a VERY long week.
Of course, me being who I am, I decided to ride ahead of Cooper. When I came to the intersection (about 100 meters or less away from the tela) and veered to the left WHAM!!! a Moto hit my almost straight on. Luckily I was not hurt in the slightet. Cooper has told me that after I was hit I alm ost immediately stood up and smiled.... I can not really remember what I did immediately follwing the crash. And, unfortunately, the Moto driver did not stay around for us to check if he had any major injuries. My bicycle was totalled and I had to take a tuk-tuk home that afternoon. I have since received a replacement bike that I will use until I am in my permanent site.
Permanent site placements will be announced on Tuesday, August 25th. As a health extension agent as well as English teacher the staff told me to expect a rural placement. I am both nervous and excited, overall just anxious, to know where I will be living the next two years. I am just hoping that I have electricity...and a comfortable home... and a nice Coteacher...and internet? Ha Ha Ha. I can dream :)
Since setting off for Cambodia a month ago I have noticed a few things:
1. Spiders no longer scare me
2. I will never be able to keep my feet or nails clean or my white clothes white
3. If an ant is crawling in my rice, I will attempt to pull it out but if I am unable to find the said ant, I will eat my rice anyway (ant and all).
4. Khmer people will smile at you but will not smile for cameras
5. I like Durian, but only in smoothies.
Life here has been going by fast. After we learn of our site placements we head off to Phnom Penh for a few days to met our Coteachers for a 2-3 day conference. On the last of our conference days all of the Peace Corps Trainees have been given the opportunity to attend the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. Hopefully it will be an interesting day at the tribunal.
If you are interested in writing me my address is:
PCT Kellee Keegan
Peace Corps (PST K3)
P.O. Box 2453, Phnom Penh 3, CAMBODIA
Think good thoughts for my site placement!