Holidays in Cambodia, 2016

Confused by all the unexpected holidays in Cambodia? Booking a journey and wanting to include Pchum Ben?  Here’s an official list of holidays in Cambodia – 2016 January 01 International New Year Day January 07 Victory over Genocide Day February 22 Meak Bochea Day March 08 International Women Day April 13, 14, 15, 16 Khmer … Continue reading

Big Trouble at Killing Fields Pagoda

In late 2004, I was working in my New Zealand office when a startling email arrived. It was sent from an internet cafe near Pub Street, Siem Reap where half an hour online cost poor students two dollars.  Back then internet access was not common. The startling thing about the email was the headline: Big … Continue reading

In Cambodia, on a Galaxy not so far away

One pair of figures from the Asia Foundation study into mobile and internet in Cambodia, sums up the growth of smart-phone usage. In two years smart-phones doubled in market share, and if anything that growth is accelerating. By the end of this year more than half of all mobiles will be smart-phones. Below we see … Continue reading

Cambodia: phone ownership hits saturation

One of the most precise indicators of progress in Cambodia is the degree of ownership of telephones – and the percentage of those that are smartphones. No data in this crazy dis-aggregated market can surpass that of a well conducted market research study – and the report compiled for the Asia Foundation Mobile Phones & … Continue reading

The Rabbit and the Earthquake. A Cambodian folk tale.

While many Cambodian folk tales feature Judge Rabbit as the smart wise-guy, other tales portray the rabbit as a nervous, less intelligent animal. In this story, rabbit’s nervousness leads to mass hysteria and an encounter with a creature I never expected in Cambodian folklore: the lordly Lion.  I don’t know how this creature from Africa … Continue reading

Debt and poverty in Cambodia

The photo of offerings, above, is one I took during Pchum Benh in 2015 near Siem Reap. I’ve been fascinated time and again by how consumer goods are such a price in Cambodia, relative to incomes, that cigarettes are often sold individually, at least in rural markets, rather than in packs. When you choose to … Continue reading