so far 2010 has been a year blessed with visitors for us. last month we had the great pleasure of hosting our good friends, craig & anny. craig & daniel grew up together in northern BC & we've enjoyed getting to know anny, craig's finance over the past few years. when we go home this summer, we are really excited to attend their wedding, where daniel will be a groomsmen.
it was quite a memorable visit, probably most notably because craig & anny braved cambodia during the hottest part of the hottest season! one of the coolest things we did was visit the community of chi phat, in koh kong province, about four hours east of phnom penh.
[cute kids in chi phat]
several years ago the villagers at chi phat made their livelihoods partly through illegal logging & poaching. in order to promote conservation, an organization called The Wildlife Alliance started a eco-tourism project in the community & trained the villagers to be guides, guest house owners, cooks, etc. The result is a really great tourism experience (hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, etc) + sustainable community development. Its a pretty inspiring project & it was great to visit it in person.
chi phat turned out to be a great adventure for the four of us. when we arrived we decided to do an all day mountain bike ride the following day. in our excitement, we didn't take into full account just how hot the weather was...turns out biking 30k in +40 degree weather (+104 in farenheit) + pretty steep & rocky mountain bike trails isn't the best combination. our guide, "Lucky" was great, but kept telling us our waterfall destination was "just one more kilometer", "just 10 more minutes". in the end he told us he didn't want to discourage us & told us it was close so we would "have more power".
when we got to the waterfall, we were tired & happy & decided to do a bit of swimming before we headed back to chi phat. however, when anny jumped into the lake, she dislocated her shoulder!
it was a pretty nerve-wracking situation - the lake was very deep & surrounded by steep rocks & we were really in the middle of nowhere. so we had to float anny across & try to re-align her shoulder while still in the water. you could see her shoulder bone separated from her arm bone - yikes! all of us had taken first-aid, but somehow none of us could remember exactly how to re-align a shoulder. our guide didn't understand "dislocated" vs. "broken" & kept trying to put her arm into a homemade splint with a tree branch. finally, craig was able to push/pull her arm back into place & with a loud yelp of pain, the shoulder was re-located!
in the end, Lucky rode to the closest village & anny & i (amanda) hired a banana farmer to take us back to chi phat on his moto. daniel, craig & lucky had to ride the 13k back to chi phat with our bikes strapped to the back of theirs.
what an adventure!