Mastodon Michael Perry

Morning coffee at Moonrise

My favorite coffee shop, Moonrise Coffee, is across the street from home. I come here most every morning for two hot lattes. It is always perfect. My wife has coffee from across the street because she favors iced coconut coffee. And we sit and talk. Sometimes tease each other. Mostly take moments from a not so busy Siem Reap morning.

Our street is a mix of Khmer and western places and a good number of expats live around. Kesor restaurant is our local Khmer noodle place. Across the street too. They serve some of the best Khmer soup noodles I’ve had. The people are friendly and all speak English to me. Since we go regularly they also know our order.

We are about .5 miles from the river and farther from Pub Street. Neither of us go to Pub Street too often. Alin does not really like it and the prices are inflated. The Old Market next door to it is good for the tourists with little time to spare but for us Alin shops at the 6th street market for food, clothing, stuff. She knows the stalls and people there. Down one street from the market is our favorite Cambodian bbq. For $12 get all the meat, veggies and sauces we can eat.

Why all this?

Well good question. I was toying with setting up Substack for awhile for more focused writing on the day to day. It seemed I could hone in on subjects of daily life, write as frequently or as little as I want and also create a mix of material. Then it dawned on me I can do all the same stuff on the blog. I came back to blot, ignored and and Wordpress for different reasons. I don’t like giving up my words to someone else and I’ve felt time and again there are empty promises from those three about leaving with the data intact. For me Blot pulls apart this quagmire of publishing and saving and holding my words. Substack seemed a decent interlude and alternative when I had thought on giving up blogging. Then I realized it is really not. It’s limited as well to apps and publishing and ownership.

Blot has always seemed a refuge and safe harbor to me for the words. And now I want to resurrect one theme on the site. I started before working on showing in photos and words my life on the day in Siem Reap. Things got more interesting when I met Alin, fell in love with her, asked her to live with me. She happily agreed and considers us married. So do I. Through all this, the one little thing called Siem Reap Living became manifestly bigger.

I sought with this to gently explore how Siem Reap gives me back so much but it’s colored and shaped with people, places, things. And now my love. How she touches the city. Makes life more. Gives more.

So welcome back

It’s like you never left. No Substack to confuse and separate. One blog. One place for all these disparate thoughts and mumbles.

To kick it off, here’s a little of the city. My home. My place on the earth. My wife. Things I once thought I would never say again.

The river does play along at places. I can walk it and find hidden little moments to live. To thrive.

My Siem Reap is a welcoming place with big sidewalks and big hearted people. My Khmer family stretches out to hold me. Forever want me happy and doing what I love. Most of that is holding Alin’s hand as we gently go.

I love cities with bridges. They are like welcoming paths from here to there. Siem Reap never disappoints with an assortment of old and new. The wooden bridges dot the river downtown but give a feeling of timelessness and beauty.

Now I’ll finish my latte. Say Akun to the barista who knows what I wish each day. Nod to the street where so many things are for me. From barber shops to cold beer. Ice cream to travel agencies that do visas. Life is full when all this is next to me. Still though there is that degree of separation that I need and they all understand. I love my family but I have this need to be my own person too. They all respect what it is that brings me joy in life.

What more could there be?

April 13, 2023