On the grapevine
Just received an invite for the soft opening this coming Saturday of the new Lotus Blanc Restaurant, about fifty metres from the Hanuman office on St 51 in Boeung Keng Kang 1. Lotus Blanc is the hotel and restaurant training facility that is housed at the PSE center in Stung Meanchey, which has been providing skills and employment opportunities for children from families making a living from the municipal rubbish dump for the last few years. This second restaurant will be open for breakfast and lunch only and will be used as another training facility for the youngsters. I've tasted the food at the original restaurant and if this is just as good, it'll be a nice option for lunchtimes.
I've just confirmed my place on the Mekong Discovery Trail (MDT) 'fam' trip on 21-24 August. Its a venture by the Ministry of Tourism/SNV to generate interest and awareness of the MDT by taking private sector tour operators to see what the MDT has to offer and to see how we can incorporate that into what we offer our clients. It's certainly an area that Hanuman is very interested in, so I'm keen to make the trip. The program includes visits to Kratie, Stung Treng, Preah Rumkel, the Sopheak Mitt waterfall near the border with Laos, the Anlung Cheuteal dolphin pool and the island of Koh Trong. Should be an enjoyable adventure. Obviously I'll fill you in on the details after the event. Hopefully with some photos, he said sarcastically!
Forgot to mention yesterday that the Cambodian U-23 national football team will be hosting a friendly match against the Singapore U-23s on Sunday 27th September as part of their preparation for the SEA Games in December. Coach Scott O'Donell has his 25-man squad in mind, though it's not yet been publicly announced, and is likely to be reduced to a 20-man squad to take to Laos for the tournament itself.
Finally, just had a whisper that the folks from the Khmer Arts Ensemble, out at Takhmau, will be performing as part of a festival run by the French Cultural Center, at the Chenla Theatre on Monday 7th September. The Khmer Arts dancers are a professional touring troupe so this will be classical Cambodian dance at its very best. More details to follow when I get them.