Yesterday the farmer was walking with his walking group, so friend W and I went out for Sunday lunch. I must say that it was a delicious lunch - starters and then roast rib of beef with all the trimmings. There is nothing better than beef if it is cut from a big joint, as this obviously was.
We sat and chatted in what turned out to be a delightful restaurant until after two o'clock and then came home. It was then that the kind of lethargy set in. Instead of taking Tess for her walk I sat on the bench in the garden while she wandered up and down among the trees. I didn't need tea - still full from lunch time - so there was little to do then. During the evening we watched a programme about a London cabbie in Cambodia - enthralling. He learned to drive a tuktuk and took over from the lovely driver for a week. What a dignified man he turned out to be
He and his wife had come into the capital to live with their seven year old son, leaving their daughter of nine on their small farm in the country, where she was looking after an aged, bed-ridden grandmother full time. They had moved from this reasonably idyllic life into the squalor of the city solely to give their son a better education than the father had had. He turned out to be a man of such dignity.
We came away from the programme feeling there was nothing on this earth we should ever complain about again. The clothing workers (many of our clothes are made in Cambodia) are exploited and keep striking for better pay and conditions (to no avail). It makes me wonder whether to stop buying anything made in Cambodia, but then that is self defeating, because if nobody buys the goods then the workers will be put out of work.
The gap between rich and poor widens by the day - it is all very depressing. Throughout it all this dignified tuk tuk driver carries on smiling (occasionally moved to tears as when he was speaking about the killing fields and the Khymer Rouge) and plying his trade for around sixteen hours a day - all to get his son an education (and he has to pay every day for it to continue).
Today my lethargy has not gone - the air is heavy and there is a feeling of thunderstorms in the air. Typing this is keeping me awake, but only just! zzzzzzzzz