Siem Reap, cleaning the rubbish

Since Tina (the new manager) arrived, I’ve got a lot more motivation to help here. In fact, I didn’t like the last manager who didn’t give a shit about anything here. I might stay for a little while longer here and see what happens. This place needs a lot of care in cleaning, gardening, plumbing, electricity and other organisation. Since I’ve been here, I kept in mind all the things I would change or improve and today, I can finally do something :-) Let’s clean those dirty and smelly rubbish then! I’ve done this “project” during three different days but will show all the progress in this unique post.

Ok, the first step was to move all the bags from one side to the other. The hostel is on the left side. This small street leads to a dead end where a dozen of houses stand. There is only two tiny bins for all the neighbours plus us. Cambodian people eats lots of take away and consume lots of water bottle as the tap water is not drinkable here. Few days are enough to feel those bins and then nobody knows when the truck we collect them. I’ve seen the truck 3 times in 5 months so we don’t have to be in hurry. In the meantime, the rubbish accumulate at a very fast pace. At night, the dogs open the bags and spread food and other smelly stuff everywhere. I cannot fix that whole problem myself but by cleaning the area, I wish the people of that street will try to keep the area clean. We’ll see. For now, I have to clean the right side.

That’s the other side of the street. I will go all the way until the end of the hotel (the yellow building on the right side).

I’ve got the protection (I thought I was smiling again…).

Finally, few hours later, I clean the ground and put all the rubbish on their original side.

Now we could even close the door if we wanted.

That’s the bonus part. At the corner of the street, close to the main road and a tiny shop, there was a rough hole with few rubbish inside. I’ve decided to empty our compost bin which was full. Then I covered the rest with dirt and planted some flowers. Using the broken pieces of bricks and other pavement, I’ve made a kind of mini garden. I also redirected a pumpkin plant which was growing locally. I hope they will survive!

This is Sopea and his mother. She is the cleaner of the guesthouse and comes 6 days a week here. Most of the time, her son come with her. He is 6 year old and doesn’t go to school yet so he hangs around during her mother works. Every time somebody is cooking, Sopea comes around, help (if he can or if we allowed) and later we share some food.
Today, he help me cleaning the rubbish. He is certainly bored here so he loves doing different activities. With all the “projects” I’m going to do here, he is going to learn few things I guess. Bye bye Sopea, see you later :-)


The previous manager (and certainly others before him) use to keep plastic bottles, glass and cans on the side of the hostel. Every now and then some poor children would come and collect them. The previous manager being very greedy, sold our waste to them to make some little profit. What a bad guy! Now, these are outside so they can come here and collect them for free. They are even sorted out :-)


Today is the next step. I want to clean the rest of the street. I’ve done the right side already and now I’m going to clean the left one. This is Lucky :-) a very nice dog. She loves when we work around so she can enjoy being outside safely. She is mostly scared of everything so that’s good for her.

Again, few hours later, the road is nearly clean :-) That one project done and more to come soon :-)

5 thoughts on “Siem Reap, cleaning the rubbish

  1. Finally I can check your website! This is the first blog I read on your site and I am touched. You’ve done much better than those who yelling about improving the environment.

      1. Bonne Année DAMIEN ! Et continue à nous faire partager ton pédalage !
        Nous, Tikai vendu. Retour en Martinique pour raison familiale, sommes à Paris et repartons mercredi pour Phuket, récupérer nos qq affaires.
        La suite, je ne j’ai connais pas encore.
        José et Moi même t’embrassons et t’assurons de notre amitié

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