Covid has been particularly hard on Cambodia and many of my friends lost their small businesses or jobs and have no income. Medical care, housing, and even food is scarce.
One friend was in dire need of his medication but had no money to buy more. He is a young man who returned to his parent’s rural village when the economy collapsed. I thought it would be simple to send him enough money for the meds through my Cambodian bank app. I was very wrong.
Where there’s a will there’s a way is a proverb that means if someone is determined to do something, he will find a way to accomplish it regardless of obstacles. The sentiment of this phrase was first published in 1640, in the work Jacula Prudentusm written by George Herbert: “To him that will, ways are not wanting.” By the 1820s the phrase had been altered to where there’s a will there’s a way.
The bank refused to give me access to my account since I had not used it for 90 days and required that I come to a bank branch in person. This was impossible since I was on another continent so I tried every which way to get it to him. It took 4 days and the involvement of 4 people from 3 different countries. We were all in different time zones, too. We managed to get the medicine to him by going through a labyrinth of sidesteps and hours of our time (I will spare you the ridiculous obstacles). Finally, our mutual friend Sothy Than picked up the money from an app service, purchased the medicine, and made sure it was delivered. We breathed again.
Seeing how we have adapted to the pandemic restrictions is proof of how innovative and resilient we are. None of us could have predicted how difficult life would be before the pandemic descended upon the world.
Perhaps none of us could have predicted the surprising ability for us to acclimate in service of the collective good.
This is also why I have created art and this website.