One of the great pleasures of my life here has been the chance to sing with the choir at the Saturday evening Mass here in Phonm Penh. Acutally, it is a pleasure, but the word pleasure gives the wrong idea. It’s more than pleasure. It a contentedness, deep inside. It goes beyond words. It has been enormously fulfilling to be a small part of a great sound, to look round as we sing and feel the collective power of these inspirational people whose ready unassuming enthusiasm has raised me up to a better place. It’s not about musical precision, perfect pitch, precise harmony. It’s live music and it’s beyond that. It’s the way only music can be. I filmed a little extract during the (sung) Our Father, though you can’t really get it from a film…… I’m always shy to film things, and so cut it off way too soon, but there is enough to give a small sense of the power of it.
One of my VSO friends, Remy, took some photos of me with the guys in the choir. I’ll try to post one of these later on….
Here they are, but it’s a very small photo!:
we were a small dedicated group, now one less than before (!), but could we sing? (see The Men Can Sing). I will miss them.
Realising that this was my last Mass with the choir made me think about all the other experiences that will be the ‘last time’. There are some aspects of my life here that are unrepeateable in any other place and many that I will remember fondly, and a few I will remember less fondly! It has been a fantastic learning experience for me – learning about people, about politics, about this big crazy planet we live on and where it is headed and, living in a country where the majority of the population is under 25, who will be in control: education has never been more important.