Since Rich is teaching Isaiah in the mornings and then I & II Timothy on Monday,Wednesday, and Friday afternoons, and has language school on Tuesday afternoon, that only left Thursday to go to the embassy to pick up the passports. We thought we would hop in the motorcycle and get close to the embassy, get something to eat, be first in line at 1 pm to get in, and be home by 1:30 pm or so.We were so wrong!!!
It so happens that the Premier of China came to Phnom Penh on Thursday; and his plane got in at noon. To set this up a bit, we live in the south part of the city. The embassy is in the northeast and the airport is in the northwest. The roads that the motorcade came in was an "L" shape. There was no way to get from our house to the embassy without crossing one of the two streets that they were driving down.
So the picture above is the motorcycles in front of us, waiting behind the barricades, for the motorcade to come through so that we can cross. There was a barrier a block behind us so that the cars couldn't come this far. We were glad we were on the motorcycle but it was still about 45 minutes before the motorcade with the Prime Minister of Cambodia and the Premier of China actually passed.
But, I'm sure that the sellers on the side of the road were happy! Lots of buyers sitting in the sun with no place to go. The picture below is of the guy selling coconut milk. For those of you that don't know, coconuts really start out looking green like below. The brown shell that you usually see in the US in the inside shell. So he hacks off the top of the shell and pours the coconut milk in a plastic bag. Then he cuts the shell open, after cutting of a sliver from the side of the shell. He uses the sliver like a spoon to scoop out the meat and add it to the coconut milk in the bag. Add a straw, and you have your drink.
Behind the coconut seller, you can see a glass box with yellow squares. That is sugar cane. You can just suck on the sugar cane square. A lot of the time, they have presses that they squeeze to make a drink out of the sugar cane.
To finish the story, we did finally get across the street at about 1:30 pm. Probably because of the road blocks, there wasn't a line at the embassy, so we did get in and through quickly. Then we headed to the riverside (Mekong River) and stopped at our favorite Mexican food place for a late lunch. We ended up getting home at about 3:30 pm. Oh, well!
In case you are interested, the Premier of China promised half a billion dollars in aid to Cambodia. Since the US and the European Union is threatening to cut off aid since the Prime Minister is getting heavy handed and as far as human rights is concerned, it is getting worse and not better, The Prime Minister has gone to China.
I hope you all are well. Keep us, the work here, and the Christians here in your prayers.