So today started off quite interesting. We were doing our sight seeing thing in Phnom Penh when we saw a campaigning political party playing music and dancing on the side walk. It seemed like a lot of fun so we got closer to see the fun. There were news cameras, music, and dancing. The members of the crowd waved to our group motioning to us to join in. A select group of us did (I was not included in that select group). After the fun, we learned that we were dancing with the Cambodian’s Communist party. I am anticipating a group of our students to be detained at JFK when we arrive back in the states…

After the political mix up, we went to a monastery to see a healer monk. On the way there, we ran into a monk (first monk picture) whose family had grown up in Cambodia, but moved to the United States, he is 13, and was born and raised in Washington State. He had decided to move to Cambodia to study buddhism as a monk. Unlike every other monk in the city (which there are thousands in Phnom Penh), he spoke perfect english and struggled with Khmer. We were lucky to run into him. Communicating with this monk was a breeze.

Later we visited the healer monk. He has healed over ten thousand people with traditional medicine and through “magic medicine”. Speaking with him was quite fun and interesting and he gave us a parting gift of tea leaves that is supposed to relieve headaches. I can’t wait to give it a try, and I do not want to be held responsible for any hallucinations I may or may not have.

Later in the day we went on a sunset boat tour and had a great time just relaxing on the water and taking pictures of the surroundings. Not too shabby for Phnom Penh.

Pete Marcano @marcano