I travel quite a bit and enjoy it. One of the things I enjoy most is the opportunity to speak with the local residents. A conversation with a waiter, tour guide, or local shop owner is often fascinating and can give you unique insights. Over 10 years ago I went to Siem Reap on business with people from all around the world. A group of us were touring Angor Wat. During when a young girl (she was 9) came up to us all and said- "Mind if I guess what country you are from?" Within seconds, she correctly guessed our countries and proceeded to recite our top government, main imports/exports, and top sights to visit. It was amazing.
Upon talking to her we learned she is the main breadwinner for her family. She spends 1/2 day going to school and 1/2 day speaking with people like us in the hopes of getting tips to support her family/village. She told me that she, and her village loved the simple carefree lifestyle they have. She also told me that one time, a visitor bought lots of toys for her village. The village is so used to having nothing, the introduction of toys caused problems. They asked the man to take them back.
It was an eye opening conversation and really made me think differently about the world from that point forward.
Posted on 05/12/2014 at 06:28:00 PM