virtual VSO

Hi family, friends and all such folk!

This is the start of my blogosphere in which I am learning to use WordPress before I begin to capture and publish my impressions of Cambodia.

Why Brechdan?  Because Adrian is in use by someone else and I’ll miss my dog.  I’ll miss my family and friends too but they can read the blog and the dog can’t.  If the blog is dreadful and you start wishing you couldn’t read it either then email me and I’ll consider renaming the blogsite after you.  But you’d better be convincing…

Why the Adele penguins?  Because Hilary and I loved them when we visited Antarctica and because they will be important to me in Cambodia.  Let me explain.

VSO training so far has involved a 3 week on-line course, two residential weekends and a two week on-line course which ends one week before D-Day.  The topics covered have included health, security, skills for working in development and exploring new cultures and this is where the penguins come in.

A new culture is likened to an iceberg and a volunteer such as me is a seagull, flying in from afar, seeing the berg from above and maybe diving in the sea a little but always of the sky.  The nationals live like fish and their culture is well known to them but they may have difficulty explaining it to seagulls.  The penguins experience life above and below the water surface.  They may be nationals who have worked with volunteers or studied abroad, or foreigners who worked in the country and learned the language and ways.  They are most important creatures.  I’m going to need the penguins.

In the meantime it’s a virtual VSO world.  As far as I know D-Day is the 2nd March and before then I’m due to work for a week without breaking my back, ski for a week without breaking a leg and pack for three months without breaking the 25kg weight limit.

And what’s the Great White Toe in the Tonle Sap?  It just my way of saying going to Cambodia with VSO is a ‘toe in the water’ for me.  Perhaps it will lead somewhere, perhaps not.  White people in Cambodia, as in many developing countries, represent the great, the wealthy, the height unreachable for the under-priveleged – so the Great White Toe is my very own and the Tonle Sap is the biggest stretch of inland water in South East Asia especially in the rainy season.

So watch this space and I’ll try and keep it interesting.  And brief.  And illustrated.  Thank you!



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17 responses to “virtual VSO

  1. Hilary

    Well done! Great idea and looks really good.

  2. Cath

    Nice, Dad. Keep it coming 🙂

  3. Helen

    Je t’aime Papa. We will miss you terribly but I very much look forward to reading all about it through your wonderful descriptions, insights, and hopefully photos. xxx

  4. Linda Wildsmith

    The site looks great Adrian! A great deal of thought obviously went into it. Ken and I will follow your progress with great interest. In the meantime take good care of yourself. Love and best wishes. Linda and Ken

  5. Ebony :)

    wow brilliant idea this is amazing 🙂

  6. are you enjoying your self?

  7. Chris Murray

    Looking fwd to following your trip. It was great seeing Hilary when I was home last month.

    Lots of love,

  8. jane and matthew

    hi mr murray sounds like your having an amazing time,is this the wrong time to tell you its been snowing in scotland? oops sorry…….much love take care xxxx

    • It looks as if there’s a storm brewing tonight – the greyest skies I’ve seen here – and it’s not due rainy season for another 6-8 weeks, so maybe some of that snow is blowing over here. It’s certainly gone cooler, must down to 30 centigrade. Cheers! Adrian

  9. Dorothi

    I’m trying again. Tri cynnig i Gymro! Work that one out!
    I’m still struggling with this sending you a message I might have to go back to ordinary e mail!

    • Hey Dorothi relax! You are coming through loud and clear. Wherever you write a reply or comment, I get an email to tell me so I can read and reply whenever I want. “Say not the struggle naught availeth” – that’s a quote from an ancient English hymn, not one I’ve heard sung very often… It means, don’t give up – it’s worth the effort! Good advice to anyone, including me.

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