Things We've Seen on Motos

The most common form of personal transportation in Cambodia is the motorbike, or “moto”. As such, it’s pretty common to see three people on the back of one moto; we’ve done it ourselves. Heck, even four isn’t too uncommon. We’ve probably even seen five at one point, though only if you count kids as full people. But hey, this is how you get everywhere. Why stick to just people? We’ve seen…

  • Trays or baskets of eggs, sodas, or water bottles (to sell, of course). Or coconuts, just tied to the back.

  • Posters, and cardboard-backed, flower-adorned signs for weddings and such.

  • Large rectangular cakes.

  • A baby tree. Actually, we were carrying that one.

  • Cabinets.

  • Large sheets of glass.

  • Dogs, often standing on two legs with their front paws on the handlebars. Very cute.

  • Bicycles, held upside down by a passenger.

  • A baby in the front basket. (Worse, we once saw a woman riding a bicycle with a baby…and the baby was in a sling, maybe a shirt, that was tied to the front handlebars.)

  • A live pig, tied legs-up on the back of the moto.

Yup. I’m sure there’s been more, too…maybe after five months I’ve stopped noticing it.


This week’s post is one I’ve been planning ever since Jaclyn and I went to Siem Reap. Next week I’m hoping to post a thoughtful analysis about translation vs. explanation when teaching a language, but (as usual for this blog) don’t expect “thoughtful” to mean “well-thought-out”. And two weeks from now…well, let’s just say I’m running out of time—

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