I was quite tempted to write about this long ago. It at one point got so unbearable that I have to pen the pain here. Many Cambodians who have travelled abroad must have at least expeirenced this disturbance or harrassment once or twice from the airport officials. Many Cambodians reckon that people who work at the airport are only waiting for opportunities to make money.
I have ever guarrenteed a friend from a middle east country three times at the International airport in Cambodia. He wanted to enter the country but was stopped by the airport officials who frowned at his presence in Cambodia. All these people could tell was that he looked like a terrorist and went on that I had to be careful. Okay, you can call anybody a terrorist based on their countries? In this case, he’s from Iran, and he is just a boy with a gentle look.
Another vexation happened again after I landed at the airport from Malaysia. I had to transit through Malaysia on the flight from Germany to Cambodia. Generally, when we return, we need to come to the big hall and join in one of the queues. My friend who came with me went first in the queue. Then, it was my turn, yet while I was sorting out the entrance machine, this old guy came to me and verbally insulted me, saying ,”You’re Cambodian, but why did you come along this line?” I was kind of dumbfounded at his stupid words. I just ignored it and went on to get my luggage. Another harrassment occurred at the same spot like last time.
This time, because my thumb print on the electronic machine screen didn’t work, he repeatedly told me to clean the thumb screen of the computer. I didn’t get his meaning at first because of his seemingly unclear words. After several tries, I could get out that entrance machine. I finally could check into my country, but the man repeated his remarks about my not understanding (ignorance), and I wonder, why the fuck these officials made a fuss about this. I only thought that most of these people have a pack mentality that nobody is better than them but foreigners. On that same day, one of the airport officials, while I was walking past him, asked me which country I just came back from. I told him that I just came back from Germany where I stayed for twp weeks. A smile was turned into a disappointed look or almost a frown.
“What was wrong?” I said. He eventually said, “Oh, I supposed it was 2 years.”