Internship in Cambodia (Week 5)
January 17, 2017
Category: Student Blogs
I finally got to go on the city tour! I see why everyone said I had to do it; it was a full day seeing a lot of sites that would have been difficult to manage on my own. We started off visiting the Olympic stadium. Here is the track but they also have a pool. Both are pretty much just open to the public from what I understand. Then, we went to the pagoda, which is where the monks live. This was the oldest pagoda in the country and the king monk lived there. We received a blessing from one of the monks and he gave us a bracelet. Leaving, we walked by the royal palace on the riverside. Then, we went to the Central Market. This was a bit more put together than the Russian Market and much larger. We took a break for lunch and then visited the killing fields to end the day. I didn’t take any pictures at the killing fields, but unlike Auschwitz or Dachau there wasn’t much to see structurally. I got the audiotape because without it would be difficult to understand what I was really looking at. The few buildings that were originally there had been destroyed, but sites to mark the mass graves had been added.
Well I ended up sick, again. I would say they were two different incidents, but I did have similar symptoms. This time was much worse though and involved a trip to the clinic. Going to the doctor was one of my biggest fears about coming over here and I handled it like a baby (as I usually do). Luckily, I went to a private clinic instead of the public hospital, because I had already heard horror stories from the volunteers working there. The doctor promptly told me to “stop being a baby” and that my “crying wasn’t helping anything get any better,” as the French are not always known for their compassion. Granted, she was also probably irritated that I asked to see the needle in the package before they used it on me. They did a blood test and I got the results back the next day; it was not Dengue Fever, but it was some sort of infection. By taking the prescribed medicine, I was told I would be fine within a few days. And, since I am writing you now, you know the story has a happy ending.
I thought it was interesting whole the trip ended up costing $80, which isn’t terribly higher than copays in the United States. I have to file with my travel insurance myself though so that’s a hassle. Still, I only paid about $50 for the insurance, so small win there assuming they actually refund me. I also bought air conditioning, which was a life-saver while I had my fever. At the rate of $6 a day, it totals to be one of my largest purchases while in Cambodia. On the bright side I have learned to swallow pills like an adult through this ordeal- no more hiding them in applesauce. In the past two months I have easily taken threefold the amount of medicine I have ever taken in my whole life.
Had I not been sick, the rest of this newsletter would consist of pictures and stories from the riverboat tour Thursday night, my weekend trip to Mondulkiri visiting the elephant sanctuary, and attending the Khmer Rouge genocide trials Monday. But, now I am just hoping to stay healthy for my flight back home Saturday. Hopefully, I will be able to get a few things scratched off my to-do list before I leave.
The Central Market
Along the riverside a man tried to sell us one of the many birds he had locked in a cage to release it for good karma. I honestly would not be at all surprised if he later just caught the bird again.
Catawba senior Shannon Morton of Millington, Md. is a double major in Economics & Finance and Accounting. An honors student, she is working on a thesis on microfinance and economic development with Dr. Eric Hake, professor of economics and chair of the Department of Business, serving as the chair for her thesis committee, along with Drs. Norris Feeney (professor of politics) and Buster Smith (professor of sociology). In the summer, Shannon mentioned to Dr. Hake that she wanted to pursue international travel associated with her honors thesis in order to do research. She researched, found, and applied for a program entitled UBELONG on her own. The Ketner School of Business and Honors program provided her with some financial support and her international experience in Cambodia began on December 4 and will continue through January 14.