We stop at a spot with a mixed collection of houses and a large stand displaying merchandise for sale. This village looks much like others we have passed, with a mix of housing that ranges from dilapidated shacks to beautiful, lovingly maintained homes. Like most houses here, these are generally traditional wood structures built on stilts. They are open and airy and the TV set is often clearly visible inside.
Choeun tells us this village is different from others, in part because they are trying to develop a business making palm sugar. The sugar is fine, but not as nice as the amazing palm sugar we had in Thailand. As I watch them make it, it is easy to see why there is a such a difference – the high level of precision that went into the production of sugar in Thailand is largely absent here. Still, they have developed a unique product to add to the other local crafts and tours of their village to bring in additional income. I hope they do well in their endeavor and that, over time, they will develop the expertise to make palm sugar as fine as their Thai counterparts.
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