February 16, 2014
By Nyko Dupuy. Photos on Flickr
Last week end, we went to Kampong Cham for the first ever Cambodian beach tournament and the first ever Khmer organized clinic.
We arrive by bus (with no more breaks), by vans, by very slow boat (12h trip) and even by motorbike (motivation prize for Dyno).
We were 12 from PPUA, 7 from SWA, 10 kids from Liger, 2 backpackers from Bangkok Hat, 2 Canadian tourists found by Kris on the beach, 20 future teachers from Vicki school and one journalist to cover the event.
Everybody gets a room at the Mekong Hotel. This hotel is well known for his rabbit on an elephant mascot and for the gigantic hallways where we could have organized another hat easily (one pitch on each floor).
We then meet at the famous Kampong Cham bamboo bridge (which is rebuild every dry season) to get to the sunny sand beach of Koh Pen. A special thanks to the persons who carries the 20L water bottle all the way.
There after cleaning the beach, setting up the fields and the shade we can start the beach tourney. Each team was name after an animal : Khla (Tiger), Tchhma (Cat), Tao (Lion), Moane (Chicken).
All games were intense, Khmers players score most of the point (at least in my team), everybody was running, laying out, cutting in the extremely hot sand (players without socks were running faster). Games were even with lots of universal points but at the end, the bravest animal wins : The chicken.
Back to the hotel with the empty bottles, the tarps, we all get a dinner organized by Vicki in a local restaurant named “Khmer Food”. We lost SWA team because they went to have Khmer food but not at Khmer food restaurant (confusing restaurant name).
Jared and Kris take another table to watch Russia loose their Hockey game at Sotchi. Then few people reach the Pirate (or Britons) bar next door to (try to) play pool.
Sunday. Wake up. Breakfast. Bamboo Bridge with moto to bring water bottles as nobody want to carry them ! Setting up the tent is less easy when it’s windy, isn’t it John and Rob.
Groups are made among the 60+ people thanks to Derrick who brings 15 more kids from Speu and extra players from Kampong Cham. SWA kids get each one (or two) a group and teach them to throw for beginner or more difficult exercises (including inside out) for confirmed.
While Khmer teach/learn and play a pickup, barangs were sleeping in the shade, playing with a baby or getting interviewed by the journalist. Everyone was so happy that this event will occur every year (some ask for 2 times a year other for a Cambodian all stars game on KC beach).
To finish the morning, prize ceremony were every participants gets a present (disc, bag, hat, krama, shirt, …). Unfortunately, there was no group picture, because we were late for the late check out and the Cambodians were very hungry.
Shower. Very late checkout. Invoices to pay. Some people try to get a lunch that never arrived or was not the good one. Return by 2 vans and a motorbike. Karaoke from SWA kids and baby throwing up to finish the trip.