Tag Archives: market

Small

I lead a very small life. I get up and go about my business and to most I am an unknown. I am a nameless stranger on the streets of a city whose language I cannot read or speak. 
Yet, everyday I feel welcomed. When shopping, the generosity of a smile, when I struggle to communicate, calms me down. The old ladies of the market laugh at me but I can see the kindly twinkle in their eyes as I stumble through buying my vegetables. The toddlers, standing on the footplate of their parents’ scooter even shout hello as they go past. So I may be unknown but I’m not unnoticed. As a foreigner, a barang, I stand out. I am tall, even by British standards, so here in Cambodia I feel as if I’ve come down a bean stalk. I sail around the town on a big old fashioned bike, having eschewed the ubiquitous motorbike, gathering smiles. 
In my small life, these seemingly meaningless interactions are anything but. Each one contributes to a sense of happiness. Here in Cambodia people are shy but they are not wary. Having come from Europe where the single adult male is shunned as potential stranger danger it is lovely to receive happy waves and carefree waves and hear parents encouraging their children to say hello. 
I will never change the world and I have no aspiration to do so. Nor will many of the people I see every day. However, a cheery hello or an open smile can change someone’s day. I know this because the good people of Battambang share their small city and their kind, friendly nature with me, making my small life a happier one. 

No Place for a Cactus

Life can be an emotional marketplace. People displaying their wares and constantly attracting people, but also and equally  not attracting others. When I look at relationships I see hooks and eyes, Velcro or even a zip. People are busy meshing together in different ways to form bonds, friendships, marriages and a whole myriad of complex, interdependent relationships. 

Some of those hooks are universal while others are more esoteric. There are people who are loved by almost everybody. They can somehow see what is on offer and move towards a mutual bonding solution. We are all different and unique. Within this melee I stand like a cactus.  I am part of life and yet I am passed by. Many people fear and avoid my thorny spiked exterior.  

The Asperger Path is not lonely. There are people I attract too. When I see beautiful, kind souls I flower. I offer up my self for those who see my differences and are not scared by them. These rare creatures who allow me to be who I am are what I seek. Together we build gentle spaces where I can be safe in a love that holds, but not too tightly. I do not attract many but I know a strong, true heart when I see one. 

The market is no place for a cactus. I hurt people as they brush past living their lives furiously. My hooks are spikes and so I have chosen wider, open spaces to make my home. My emotional landscape isn’t barren or empty. It’s beautiful, like the desert after rain.  

Transactions

I went to market, Psar Nath,  yesterday and bought a few bits and pieces. A smiley lady reminded me that communication is much more than words and home I came with a bag of goodies. It’s been a month or so since I had access to a cooker and I have eaten out come rain or shine. Now if it’s raining I can stay home and dry and eat. It’s going to be awesome. 


I tend eat my own version of Asian food. I have a wok and a love of veggies so a stir fry is the usual choice. Last night I sat in my kitchen and cleaned and chopped and peeled. It was so relaxing. The wok went on and soon as I smelled the garlic and ginger releasing their aroma I knew dinner was going to be great. 

Simple home cooked food is a joy for me. A one pot approach and an emphasis on plenty of vitamins and nutrition. A second shopping trip this morning and I experimented making soupy noodles with some leftovers. I’ve still got enough for supper. 

So tomorrow I’ll be off to market again.  I’m hoping I’ll get another smile with my shopping.