We:30 Share and Tell: Bri's Cambodian Bracelets

Every Wednesday at 3:30 we get together to celebrate an employee who exemplifies our core values to inspire, share, evolve, exceed and be 100% jerk-free. Our Share and Tell edition invites an employee to share something that inspires them and has a unique story.

This week Bri Horvot, Red Door's Search Specialist, brought her Cambodian bracelets!

The first time I went out of the country, I jetted around SE Asia for 2 ½ weeks and explored Vietnam, Thailand, and the city of Siem Riep in Cambodia. As I’m sure anyone who’s traveled in a foreign country can relate to, the trip was extremely eye-opening, enlightening, scary, exciting, and a million other adjectives that only begin to describe the experience as a whole. When I got back I had an awesome tan, tons of stories, and had ditched most of my worn-out clothes to fit all my souvenirs into my one backpack. 

Of all the things I bought or collected over those couple weeks, these three bracelets are by far my favorite things. I bought them for $3 total from a little Cambodian girl named Linda. We were celebrating my birthday at a restaurant on Pub Street (basically 4 blocks of “American” food and entertainment), and I saw her dancing to a Jay Z song in the middle of the street while she walked around selling bracelets to all the tourists. Our party asked the waitress to call her over.  We each bought a few and talked to her for a few minutes. We found out she was 8 years old, had been selling bracelets for 3 years, and would likely be out selling till 2 or 3 in the morning by herself. She seemed pretty anxious to leave and as we watched her go, we saw her get shook down by a police officer and our waitress. They each took $1 for every person she had just sold to – the cut for her selling on their turf, a rule we hadn't been aware of until we asked the waitress.

I love these bracelets not only because of how fun and colorful they are, but because they are a reminder to me of a beautiful country, a fun birthday, and to always be grateful. I went to Asia at a time when I was feeling unexcited about things and I wasn't where I wanted to be career-wise (this was pre-RDI days), but I came back much more aware and appreciative. I didn’t have exactly the job I wanted, but I had the chance to work hard, take advantage of opportunities, and move forward. I was also bummed because my car had just died, but I had a great transportation system that took me anywhere I needed to go. Neither of those were the case for most of the people I came into contact with in those countries. So these bracelets hanging with my jewelry are a great reminder to me of those people's positivity, work-ethic, and to always remember how much we have. 

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