This is my post on my recent Learning Outside The Classroom (LOTC) Cambodia Trip. This blog will mainly contain paragraphs of my highlights of the trip. Since there were many activities that we did but there were certain times where I had felt the trip was very enjoyable and something worth remembering. Saturday was the day I went to the airport for check-in and had some snack before heading onboard. An hour into the flight and I already had a sore throat. Knowing this I felt that this trip may not be as an enjoyable experience as I thought it would be. The van that I had rode on was playing music that everyone on my van knew as well which was very fun. We first headed to have lunch at a large buffet that had Thai and Cambodian food. After eating a nice meal, we headed to our first hotel which we will be staying for 2 days.
This morning, we went to the S-21 which was the Genocide Museum. Through walking around the place and listening to the guide, I was able to develop my understanding of what had happen here. Each of the prison had photos of a person that was in the room, blood was on them and on the floor. I could visually see it as the blood stain was left on the floor which caused the orange tile to turn slightly greyish. Just trying to imagine what that person had felt was quite frustrating, it was impossible to escape as from day and night they had people walking around the place and there was barbed wire along the building fence outside. I met two survivors as well which was great as I was able to listen to their story of how they saw what was going on at the time and managed to get a book signed by one of them.We went to the Killing fields, it was extremely hot and very tiring to walk around the place in this weather condition. There was a total of 18 playlists that we had to listen to, each of them lasted around 5 minutes or so. We explored the area to learn and gain a better understanding of what had happened at this period of time and some of the places that I went to really gave me a spark of interest to gain more knowledge of what had happened.
Throughout the course of the Cambodia LOTC trip, we were able to engage in a variety of activities. First of all was the doing service work through the non-political NGO called Buddhism and Society development association (BDSA). We were split into two different groups that we individually wanted to take part of. One was brick – layering and the other was plastering the wall. Doing this was quite an achievement for me personally as this allowed me and other people that is working to know that through doing this, we are helping to develop this community by knowing that we were part of this service of helping kids and the community itself construct this building. The building was originally built out of wood but there were thieves who came in and stole some writing utensils. Therefore through many schools we came together to layer the bricks of these buildings and have made a good amount of progress.The last day we were mostly just relaxing and enjoying the scenery of Cambodia and the kids that we helped. For the last day there was a musical dance performance in the area where we worked in. The music and dancing was amazing because you could see the smiles on the Cambodian children’s faces. We also had a dance with the children and it was just a very enjoyable evening. This will definitely a trip where I had gained a lot of insight to the history of the country and just the experience of being part of the community that we gave service to.