The never-ending adventures of a travel writer in Vietnam, Cambodia, New Zealand and throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Phnom Penh Impressions

Wat at Sunset along the riverfront

The Sorya shopping center is better than Vietnam's Diamond Plaza, Saigon Center and Vincom Towers combined.

Contemporary Khmer Dance at Sovanna Phum Arts Association

Selling sticky rice cooked in bamboo

Another kind of child trafficking. Some of them may be legitimate, but it is obvious that many are not. Why work when you can sleep all day on the street and tourists hand you wads of cash without even being asked? It sure pays more... Dozens of women lay with babies on mats, presented like offerings. Many of these children are apparently rented for the day. They are purposefully dressed in rags--some of them even physically abused--just to make them look more haggard so they can get more handouts. Again, there may be some individuals with real need mixed in, but for many of these women, I believe they've made a conscious choice to live this way rather than work.

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