In mid-December the hotel staff in Phnom Penh started to put up Christmas decorations. Pink and blue glistening strands were woven through the stairwell posts. Twinkling lights decorated the bushes on the rooftop terrace. Best of all, the whole staff took part in decorating a tree in the lobby. They let us know they wanted us to feel at home while we stayed at the One Up Banana Hotel. Wow! We do!
Signs of Christmas are all around us. Many shops play Christmas music, from Hark the Herald Angels Sing to I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus, and have decorations up, including snowflake silhouettes on windows in this tropical country. Checkout clerks at the local grocery are wearing little red “elf” hats. We even found Christmas baking products in a store.
We’ll be heading up to Siem Reap for Christmas, but, before we left, the hotel staff gave us beautiful presents: silk scarves for each of us. We’ll remember this Christmas for years to come.