Saturday, September 30, 2006

Au Revoir

I wrote earlier about a wonderful French couple who had come to work on the boat with us. They recently found out that she is pregnant with their first child and the risk of staying is too great. We will miss them when they return to France next week. Dr, Victoria and her husband Xavier are wonderful Christian people we will miss but hope to see again. She will kill me if she finds out about this picture!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Recommended Reading

I have recently finished reading a book I would recommend to almost anyone I know, especially those over the age of 35. “The World Is Flat”, by Thomas L. Friedman is an excellent read for anyone who is not really sure just what people mean when they talk about “globalization”.

After reading the book I wrote to both of my children to recommend it to them. It is about how drastically the world has changed in the last 15 years. The author explains how the fall of the Iron Curtain on 11/9/89 and the events of 9/11/01 have changed the world forever. He says that those who fear the global changes, and especially the outsourcing of jobs to other continents, should rather see the changes as a great opportunity instead. As several billion new people enter the middle class, we will be able to provide them with many services and high tech items that only our great country can produce. Those who are aware of the changes will be in the right position to take advantage of them. Those who will not or cannot see the changes will slowly fade out of the picture.

I told Britt and Greg that I must have been asleep when the change happened! I hope their professors and teachers have been telling them how the world is now flat but if not, read this book!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Cyclo Fun

The most time honored form of public transportation in Cambodia is the cyclo. Most of the older Cambodians will not ride a Tuk-Tuk or a moto-dop taxi, preferring to ride the cyclo. It is a little slower than the others but it has its advantages. First of all, it is quieter. For the older Cambodians, slower is better, but the younger generation, just like our Western kids, they like everything fast!
Yesterday a local cyclo driver let me test out his rig. He looked nervous but I had a good time.


We were in Thailand last week when the coup occurred. As Gail said, we never felt unsafe as most people seemed to support the takeover with a business as usual attitude. We have read several times about the Prime Minister using fortune tellers to help him foresee the future. Guess his last one missed out telling him about the coup while he was at the UN. The hotel we stayed at in Bangkok offered this service for their valued customers. Guess the money changers Jesus drove out of the temple were not authorized money changers huh!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Elephant Fun

On our recent trip to Thailand, we were able to visit an Elephant Park. They train elephants to do all sorts of things from playing soccer to oil painting.
They are also good at giving hugs for photo opts.
Gail was a little uneasy about the picture and she was really nervous when two of them gave her a big ole trunk hug at the same time. The look on her face says it all!


Recently two of our WEI teachers went back to the states after being here for six weeks. They are Wallace and Carol Randol from Sherwood, Arkansas.
We kept telling Wallace how much we were going to miss him. He didn’t believe us so Teo and I put on sackcloth and ashes to demonstrate our true sadness to him. Well, maybe it wasn’t sackcloth and ashes, but it was tow-sacks and baby powder! The important thing was that everyone had fun and our friend Wallace got the message! By the way, we do miss him.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Another Sunday Night

I had the opportunity to speak Sunday night. I spoke on the topic of bringing people to Jesus. Isn’t that our primary focus in the Christian life? I told how Andrew brought his brother Peter to Jesus when he found him in John Chapter one. Several brought a blind man to Jesus in Mark chapter eight and finally the wonderful story of a group of men bringing the paralytic man to Jesus in Mark chapter 2.
We need to be willing to tear holes in the roof or whatever it takes to help others to get to Jesus. These men were focused and these men were determined. May God help us to be like them.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Back in Cambodia

As you have noticed, we have not posted a blog in a while. Since there was a holiday here in Cambodia, we decided to take a quick trip to our neighboring country of Thailand. Little did we know we would be there during a military coup! Other than military men on the streets and at all major buildings (holding guns) there was not much noticeably different! We visited Chiang Mai which is located in Northern Thailand. We were able to visit with David and Michelle Allen and their two daughters. They have been in Chiang Mai for twelve years and were a great inspiration to us. We stayed over in Bangkok for two nights and enjoyed Starbucks coffee and Mexican food! We had a great time, but were glad to get back to everyone here at the PIP house. Gail

Monday, September 18, 2006


As some of you may remember, last January I wrote about a dentist named Mark Trotter. Mark and his wife Lyla and their 6 children had decided to move to Cambodia much like Gail and I. Mark sold his practice and was one month from making the move when he began to have some mild neurological symptoms. A visit to his doctors confirmed a nightmare diagnosis.
Mark Trotter passed from this life last week after fighting a 9 month battle with an extremely aggressive brain tumor. Mark is one of my heroes and I will never forget his courage both before and after his diagnosis. He and his wife Lyla were deeply committed to Christian missions and loving others as themselves. May his story and legacy live on for many years to come and motivate others to hear the call of God.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Another Friday Night

We had a great time out Friday night. A local dentist asked me recently what we did in the evenings. I had to say not too much, but we do have an occasional outing with the teachers here. Usually we see something of Khmer cultural significance.
Friday night we went to the Sovanny Phum theatre and watched traditional Khmer dance and shadowed images to explain local tradition and folklore. There was also music played on traditional instruments. The musicians played quite loudly and one comment was that it sounded very, “Hindu”, but another comment was that it was simply, “Awful”! Ha.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Back in the Saddle Again

Like the old Gene Autrey song says, “I’m back in the saddle again.” Last Saturday I took out an abscessed tooth for one of our employees. Today, Gail and I went out into the country side and did a one day clinic for a small village where the church meets. They have had a flurry of baptisms the last month or so, and they had asked us to come. Tomorrow, I will go to Prey Ta Tong for a one day clinic as well. Pisey, our translator, also helped chairside.
Before last Saturday I had not seen or touched a single patient for almost one year. My last day of practice was Sept. 30th, 2005! I’m glad to announce that I have not forgotten how to give injections or extract teeth. I was a little worried but as the say in Cambodia, Ought Bonnie Hah. In English that means, No Problem!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

The Blind Man - The Rest of the Story

Several months ago I wrote about a blind man I had seen on the side of the road. That is not too unusual, but what I was told about him was. He is not only blind, but he supports a wife and several children by climbing sugar palm trees and collecting the oil from them! I wanted to see meet him and find out his story but for several reasons it did not happen.
Yesterday I stopped close to where I had seen him before and asked about him. Two ladies told me he lived close by. When Pisay and I went to his house, we met his wife and several children and grandchildren. When I asked to meet him, you probably guessed it, he was out working! This time his wife told me he was planting rice in the nearby field. She told me that he had lost his sight in a landmine accident in 1981. I asked her why he worked and did not beg and she said, “He is too shy!” I think there is more to it than that so we set off to find him.
When I first saw him, he was pulling up rice to be replanted farther apart in the field. He graciously came over to talk with us, and I told him how much I admired him for doing so well despite his disability. He said it was nothing and shrugged it off. I told him that I was in Cambodia because God’s Son, Jesus, was my Savior and that he had lived on earth many years ago and had healed many blind men. I told him that I could not heal him, but that I would like to tell him about Jesus. He responded that he had never heard of this Jesus and he was not sure if he was interested but that he would like to hear more about him. He invited me back to tell him more after the rice planting rush.
I am excited about going back next month and telling him about the Great Physician. This is going to be a great experience I think!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Coconut Tree

This week a man came knocking on our door wanting to get the coconuts out of the tree in front of the house. Since they were in trees about 3 stories high, we thought is best if he did cut them down. He climb the tree in about ten seconds. He lowered the coconuts by rope, and then climbed back down still holding on to his knife. People enjoy drinking the coconut juice. The banana tree is finally producing fruit but nobody knows when to cut them off and let them ripen.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Great Day Sunday

This past Sunday we had a great day. I was asked to go to one of the small communities where the church is being taught to transport some people. When I arrived, there were 12 or 13 people who wanted to be baptized into Christ. I drove the group to Tum Nuk Tum, about 20 Km away, to use their baptistery. What a great privilege to see 12 people be immersed into Christ and see the establishment of the Jum Thi Shi Church of Christ! It is good to be able to help in a small way.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Sticky Rice

On Tuesday nights, Rick leads a new Christian class. Usually I fix a simple dessert following class for the students to eat while visiting. Last Tuesday night was a treat because one of the girls brought a popular Khmer sweet called Sticky Rice. Notice the color… black! Rick is really sinking his teeth into this “sticky” snack. You may wonder what this could possibly taste like!? Well, rice with a little sugar is about all I could come up with. The color is black because it is made with black rice. The other, if you can see in the picture, is made with white rice. There is a difference in taste with the two colors, but can’t really explain. Sorry. Kimsom, who brought the treat, is cutting it for everyone.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

New Dental Chair

Recently I have decided to buy a portable dental chair and do some work out in the rural areas while we wait on the government. I went to a Chinese dental equipment shop where I had heard they have these available. I brought this beauty home and even though the bulb did not work, I was very excited! It comes with it’s very own cuspidor holding ring! A real beaut don’t you think? (The bulb works now!)

P.S. If you have ever seen a child get so excited about a new toy, then you can picture Rick when he was putting this chair together! Is was great! Gail
P.S.S. Happy Birthday Brittany! We love you!