An e-mail for my Tuk Tuk driver. Life is Cambodia is always a revelation.
Hello, one and all! It is 12.13 am, and I desperately need to go to sleep! But my mind is in overdrive and won’t allow me to do so.
Consequently, I am going to while away the time in writing. I haven’t found any darned sheep to count so what else can I do?
Tomorrow I am going with my Tuk Tuk driver to see the countryside, meet his family and visit one of the rural village schools. It's for certain I will have a fascinating day, My TT (short for Tuk Tuk) man is a sweetie...but oh my God sometimes I wonder what planet he is on! The other day I found him lounging in his TT (as they all do when they have no business) and very obviously waiting to get some business out of me!
Hurriedly I told him that since I was busy building my website, he wouldn´t be needed. You can image my surprise when he said: “Oh I need a website can you do one for me?"
Thinking to myself "Holy sugar! That's all I need" I naturally answered with a big stupid smile "Yesss, of course, I can" why my tongue always wags when it should be completely still I will never know.
Fortunately, I had the presence of mind to ask him why he needed a website...I mean why would a Tuk tuk guy need such a thing!!! That is, unless he intended to go for the big time. When he told me he needed to be able to write to his clients the penny dropped!!! Aaaaah what he needed was an email. Again big mouth me tells him that's no problem. Well, I don’t know how it happened, but the next thing is I am sitting with him in the back of the TT and proceeding with what I thought would be the easy task of setting up his email.
He hands me his rather small antiquated mobile phone and informs me that I have to go into the supermarket opposite us. I then have to ask them for their password for an internet connection. I am aghast! Let's face it folks anywhere in the world if you asked a shop for their password they would tell you to get lost! Not so in Cambodia, they happily informed me of the secret code, and we were all ready to go.
Below is how the filling out of his details for a new email address went:-
Me……. “OK, so your name is Ben? “(I have always known him by this title)
Me…….”What is your surname?”
Me ……. “No, by that I mean, your last name?
Me ……”So you are called Ben Ben?”
Ben …...”Noooo my name is Pov.”
Me …...” So you are Pov Ben?
Ben or Pov ……”Yes”
Me ….. “I need your date of birth.”
Ben or Pov…...”Sunday”
Me…….” No Pov or Ben, I need the period, what day 1.2.3, etc.?”
Ben or Pov…..”I don’t know, Sunday.”
Ben or Pov -”Month??????”
Me.. ”January, February, March?”
Ben or Pov .. “I don’t know, Sunday.”
Me…..”OK, Ben or Pov what year?”
Ben or Pov……”Year?”
Me…..The year Pov! 1970, 1980, 1990, 2015?
Ben or Pov …”I don’t know, Sunday.”
An hour has since gone by, and I am still setting up or at least trying to do his email!!! I then decide just to give him a new date of birth and get on with it. After several attempts with dear old Google being just as awkward as Pov. "The name is taken," "this password is not strong enough," "please use capitals and numbers, Jazzus he is a Tuk tuk driver not a secret agent for the FBI."
Phew, finally I eventually got his new email and password sorted. Dear God! What a relief! With mission accomplished I finally managed to escape from Ben’s or Pov's TT. Aaaah then guess what! He smilingly asks me when I could organise Facebook for him! My Mother used to say “No rest for the wicked” Such is life 🙂
What was interesting was that on commenting to a friend of mine who has lived a long time in this country, he told me that many Cambodians don't know their date or year of birth. Apparently when the Khmer Rouge were in power a lot of official papers got destroyed, consequently they have no records to check out their personal history. How sad for these lovely people. Nobody deserves the terrible suffering they went through.