After our two hours of class, we come back to our apartment for a bit of a break and to review all we have learned. Depending on how the morning went, sometimes a second cup of coffee is in order! Then it is practice time! We go to the local market almost every day for fresh fruits and veggies and other things we need. This isn’t like going to the local Wal-mart: we squeeze through the narrow aisles of stalls selling anything you could imagine really! You just have to know what area to search for certain things, and often I am surprised when I am on the look out for something that seems random, I can normally find it. Our purchasing language is expanding and we are able to explain more of what we want/need and understand the price they give us much more quickly! The tuk-tuk and moto drivers are starting to recognize us and will call out their “Hellos” as we walk past. There are often cultural events in our neighborhood to check out as we walk the familiar route: weddings, funerals and other celebrations.
After we have done our shopping and talking, we work more on our own to study and prepare. We are finding creative ways to pull the language in- a clock with Khmer numbers, labels for items/places in our apartment and the days of the week, and yesterday we found several children’s books at the market that we can use to remember vocabulary and use to create stories to practice dialogue and narrative.
We also have made several friends that we can meet with to practice! Right now we run out of things to say pretty quickly, but it will be fun to soon be able to converse more with them! We also have been attending a Khmer church and have met some really sweet people there as well. We can pick out a few words from the sermon that we recognize and thankfully one of our friends lets us know what the Bible passage is so we have some idea of what the sermon topic is. We make most of our own meals and switch between Cambodian style and a few favorite American dishes. Kristin is normally our expert chef and I assist or just do the dishes after the meal. Bed time comes early, after more review and practice and maybe some reading just for fun.
We have settled into a routine, but God has new adventures for us every day!