One of the things I will miss about Cambodia is that even if you have a less than exciting day, your still in Cambodia with little surprises around every corner.
It rained heavily yesterday afternoon so I wasn't alarmed that the concrete courtyard of my house was flooded with about four inches of water when I got home from work. Luckily, the rain had ended about an hour before so the water was not murky. I paused, watching the little bubbles popping up through the cracks in the concrete, took off my shoes and rolled up my pants (white leather flip flops don't do well with sandy water). The little girl who lives down stairs at my house ran inside to get a big red bucket and I was trying to figure out if she would attempt to float me through the water with it.
Then something moved on the roof of the small warehouse next to our house. Stupid horny cat, I thought, guessing this was the creature whose yowling makes me cringe. But then I noticed its unusually long tail. And long limbs. And face. It was a small, pale monkey! I have never seen a monkey anywhere in Phnom Penh besides Wat Phnom park and, though my land lady said there were monkeys near the house, I was pretty surprised.
I started pointing at the monkey frantically as it crawled between the wooden openings of the roof. The land lady's husband, in only his plaid boxer/short things, plodded out into the water and looked up too. Unfortunately, the monkey was gone by then and I didn't know how to communicate that in Khmer. So I shrugged and waded over to the stairs to my porch. By then Alida (little girl) was back with the bucket and gave it to her dad and pointed at me. I tried to say I didn't need it but he came over to me on the stairs. And then he poured water from the bucket over my feet with a joking, "Oooh!"
I laughed, said thanks and headed inside with a warm fuzzy feeling. This place and the people here continue to amaze me.