Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The lesson traveling teaches: “Why do you…?” versus “Why don’t you…?”

Me and our guide in Kompong Kleang. It is through his brother that Ponheary is able to purchse brand new bicycles for only $40 for the children who graduate and want to go on to secondary school.When traveling, fortunes change on a dime--and, ironically, some of those fortunes-gone-bad end up costing small ones! Traveling encourages you to keep an open mind.

More importantly, traveling opens for you--if you allow it to--a wider perspective on life. With this new perspective, you more often softly ask “Why do you…?” to seek understanding than boldly blurt “Why don’t you…?” to belittle. This wider perspective teaches you to appreciate differences and embrace rather than shun them; to stand back and simply say “huh,” while admiring a different technique rather than to scorn and accuse someone of doing something “the wrong way,” or “not how I would do it.” Finally, the wider perspective encourages you to less often use the extreme descriptors “right” and “wrong,” and more often use a subtler descriptor--“different.”

Me riding on the bow of the boat in Kompong Kleang, so I could get a good view of upcoming shots. The trade-off was it was in the beating sun, but the hat really helped a lot more than I thought it would.
Enjoy a couple of photos of me taking photos, being a tourist, and otherwise absorbing the Cambodian culture.

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