Hello All, and thanks for following me. Todays topic is Rice Planting

Cambodia has two seasons, wet and dry. We are now in the wet season which goes from early June into October. This doesn’t mean it rains every day, in fact, there can be stretches of dry days during the rainy season. The type of rain can vary from a rare day of drizzle to a more common afternoon monsoon down pour. But the streams, lakes and pools fill up this time of year which means plenty of water for the rice fields.

So, yes, that is me out in the rice field, trudging through the water and thick mud, planting rice. Rice is planted with rice plants of about a foot in length. As I worked along side the Cambodians I asked someone about any critters, particularly snakes, that one might encounter in a rice field. He enthusiastically replied that there were and lots of them. Apparently, water snakes are considered a tasty dish. But, he added, not to worry because they are non-poisonous unlike the cobra that was recently spotted lurking in the grass I had just walked through to get into the rice field. (Which also happens to be the  way out, I might add). There’s a new adventure every day around here.

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Disclaimer: The content of this website is mine alone and does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Government, the Peace Corps, or the Cambodian Government.
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This is the book trailer for my novel Azaleas Beyond the Prison Walls. Book sales are increasing so I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those that have supported me by purchasing my books. Although I’m no longer with Smart Cat Publishing, all my books are available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Links are on this website. Hope you will take a moment to listen and enjoy.

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Hello All, and thanks for following me. Todays topic is Sugar Cane

The first picture that I have posted here is a field of sugar cane. It’s raised all around this region and is a major agricultural commodity in Cambodia. The second picture is of the machine that a person will run a stalk of sugar cane through to squeeze out the juice. Cambodians consume huge amounts of sugar. It’s in soda, energy drinks, coffee loaded with sweetened milk, cake and bread. They will drink pure cane sugar juice from this machine. They even will coat meat with sugar before frying it in oil. This is all done without an understanding of the health consequences that can result from the high consumption of sugar which includes diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Often they might not even realize that they are consuming sugar. For example, I’ve tried to order a fruit smoothie without added sugar only to have them pour sugar cane juice into the smoothie. I don’t believe, however, that it’s unusual for a country that raises sugar as a commodity to consume large amounts. I’ve been to Haiti and Guyana where they also raise sugar cane. But I’m not sure I understand the point of raising sugar cane but not vegetables which seems to be the case here in Cambodia. In Haiti, sugar cane has the added consequence of rum production. Rum is produced from sugar cane and is a contributing cause of alcoholism. But just to be clear, I have nothing against rum, in fact, I’m a big fan of a Mai Tai. I have nothing against sugar either for that matter. I enjoy a sweet treat like anyone else but the health consequences of over consumption can have a significant impact on ones health.

I work in a rural health center that focuses on pre/post-natal care and vaccinations. My effort here is to educate the staff on the assessment and management of these non-communicable diseases by providing the clinic with glucose monitors and triglyceride/cholesterol monitors and educating the staff on how to manage these diseases.

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Disclaimer: The content of this website is mine alone and does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Government, the Peace Corps, or the Cambodian Government.
=============

This is the book trailer for my novel Azaleas Beyond the Prison Walls. Book sales are increasing so I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those that have supported me by purchasing my books. Although I’m no longer with Smart Cat Publishing, all my books are available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Links are on this website. Hope you will take a moment to listen and enjoy.