|This young girl's smile took our breathe away.|
This Mekong River cruise is unlike any cruise we've experienced in the past. The authenticity of the small ship and its rustic teak/mahogany design, the small spaces and cabins, the added requirements for organization and planning make it special in many ways.
|The entrance to the orphanage.|
|This adorable girl greeted us at the main entrance.|
|Handsome young man.|
|It was hard not to instantly feel attached to these children, their plight in life while hoping and praying for their future.|
Most of the stories of the reasons why these children are living in an orphanage revolve around poverty, parental drug abuse and crime, neglect and abuse in one form or another leaving each precious soul with memories and images they may never forget.
|The boys obviously had other things on their minds that catering to a group of tourists. We didn't blame them.|
|The children had probably been through these presentations more times than they could count. We certainly understood.|
|They all waved to us at the end of their sweet performance.|
|This wheelchair bound young man deserved some attention too.|
We realize that a part of these explanations could easily be propaganda to elicit donations from the visitors but somehow we felt a strong commitment based on who the Cambodia people are; spiritual, honest, loving and kind.
|Another building on the property.|
|The small bathroom in the sleeping quarters.|
|The director of the orphanage, 16 years in residence.|
(Preferring not to "toot our own horn regarding donations, we remain mum on this topic. To us, the greatest donation is one that doesn't seek any personal recognition or accolades from others).
|Groups A and B during the presentation by the director and songs sung by the children.|
Today, we didn’t attend the morning tour when part of it included a ride on an ox cart (video to follow in future post as we stood by watching the procession) which would have been unsuitable with my current condition.
|Another table of handicrafts made by the children for sale in the tiny shops on the grounds of the orphanage.|
|Bedroom for the children. It was sad to see the not-so-well-equipped space.|
|Bracelets, ribbons and various crafts the children made to learn the value of the entrepreneurial spirit.|
|Crafts for sale, all handmade by the children.|
|The living quarters for girls and boys are separate.|
|Sewing machines, although quite old are available for the kids to learn to make handicrafts.|
|Classroom on the property.|
|These bikes are available for the kids to use.|
|After the tour, we returned to our ship.|
Photo from one year ago today, July 15, 2015:
|This shell we found in the sand in the Trinity Beach area of Australia had a rough exterior. For more shell photos, please click here.|