Suesdai!!!!!Am I alive? I think I'm alive. Literally checking my pulse as we speak. I have officially made it alive in Kampong Cham province for 12 days. But I can tell you it definitely doesn't feel like 12 days. My body clock is telling me that my mission is pretty much over already.
Teaching can also be terribly frustrating. Like with this one investigator we have named Ming Mau. Oh Ming Mau, what am I going to do with you. This is actually the same lady whose grandson was sick and we brought her the first aid kit. But there's a problem with that. I love helping people here and doing service (which I'll talk some more about), but SO MANY Cambodians have this idea in their head that our church and specifically the missionaries are here to just give them things. We are a service church. We are always the first on call to help when someone or some place needs it. But we, especially the missionaries, are not here to give you money. We're here to give you something better than that. We're here to teach you about the greatest message you will ever know about. And it SUCKS that they don't even realize it. When we were teaching Ming Mau the other night, she was definitely intoxicated, but we don't know to what extent. So she had been drinking and she wasn't listening to anything we were saying (she also thinks that we're gods apparently. because I guess that's how Buddhists sometime view their monks, so we had to explain that we're not gods, we're just teachers. awkward). And anyway, she kept saying things like, "will you give me medicine? Will you give me money? Will you pay for my rent?" And we had to explain to her, WE DON'T HAVE ANY MONEY. We're not getting paid to be here. We're doing this for free because it's that important to us! Why do you think I left America to come to Cambodia! I must have something SUUUUUPER important to say! I wish I could just shake people by the shoulders and tell them that. So it's hard when people don't appreciate the reasons we've come here and learned their language and gave up a portion of our lives for because they think we'll just feed them and give them money. Super yap (annoying).
Can I just tell you the funniest thing that Ming said though? We asked her if she had been praying every day like we asked her to, and her response is this: "When I pray, I pray, and when i don't pray, I don't pray."
.........thank you. that doesn't answer my question in the slightest. Obviously it wasn't funny at the time, but Sister Homer and I were cracking up thinking back on it this morning. Cool Ming, cool.
Anyway, I got to do service last week with the rest of our district. We helped a member plant peanuts. No I'm not kidding. they were way out in the middle of nowhere and they had fields behind their house. LET ME TELL YOU: Cambodians are eerily particular about the way you are supposed to put peanuts in the ground. C'mon. I got corrected on my arrangement of peanut seeds more times than I can count. But it was so fun. I think doing service like that has to be one of my favorite parts of being a missionary.
I just love helping the people here. Most of them have such hard conditions to deal with. Whether it's their house, the fact that their legs don't work, the fact that they can't even afford to send their kids to school (which absolutely BREAKS my heart that these amazing kids don't have the opportunity to go to school). I just wish i could change all of their lives. But for right now, I have to be content laying the foundation brick by brick. I can't change Cambodia in one 18 month stint. So I'm doing my part as a missionary and hope that for just one person, that can make the difference some time down the road in their future.
I just don't even know what else I have to say. I honestly could write for hours about the things that happen to my every single second of the day, but I definitely don't have that kind of time, and my emails are already crazy long. Plus I've got a bunch of pictures for you and a picture is worth a thousand words; when you're in Cambodia, it's worth a TRILLION WORDS.
I love you all to the moon and back. I think about you every single day!!! Thank you so much for all of the love and support - from everyone!!!
Love, Sister Davis
This is a house in Bung Snaay that I teach at. Her name is Phalli. I was actually trying to get a picture of the whole road, but I didn't want to be the insensitive American taking pictures so I snapped this one from my bag. So sorry I couldn't get the rest of the road. but you probably get the idea.
This is Vial Ksaac. It's beautiful there. probably the prettiest part of Kampong Cham.
More of Vial Ksaac.
YAY FOR SERVICE!
AND YAY FOR PLANTING PEANUTS!!!Also, you can go ahead and make this my profile picture on facebook. I don't think I'll ever get a better picture to represent the fact that I'm a missionary in Asia. The nametag, the peace sign, the Cambodian head scarf (not a fashion statement - simply to absorb the sweat, I promise), the fact that I'm planting peanut seeds. It's all there.
This is the house of the family we did service for. We ate lunch with them afterwards. guys, Cambodian food is actually super awesome. But DONT EAT THE CHICKEN. the chicken of cambodians is not the same chicken of americans. its just...........not chicken. heed my warning!!! I think I'll take a picture of the meat area of the phsaa for you next week.