Category Archives: cambodia

My Conversation with a Monk in Cambodia

My conversation with a Monk in Cambodia

One of the most amazing things that can come from traveling the world is when you are confronted with a ‘pinch yourself’ moment.  A place in time when you cannot believe you are doing what you are doing, that you are where you are in that moment, and everything just hits you with a sense of awe and wonder.  I had one of those moments back in 2006 when I was visiting Siem Reap, Cambodia with my mum.   Continue reading

Travel: Your Most Memorable Night’s Sleep

I was asked about where my most memorable night’s sleep has been on my travels.  There have been some incredible places that I have stayed around the world but nothing more magical to me than my time in Siem Reap, Cambodia.  My mum and I stayed at the Angkor Howard Hotel in 2006 for that year’s Asian Mission Conference.  While I had been to the neighboring country of Thailand before this was my very first time in Cambodia.  From our first day to our last we were greeted and met with such hospitality and many smiles from the hotel staff.  From our time in the hotel and out in the city I have never met a culture of people who have been so nice, friendly, and smile as much as the people of Cambodia.


Continue reading

Travel Throwback #1: Cambodia


Photo belongs to Bonnie Rose Photography © 2007 – 2014 All Rights Reserved |

 I have started a new series for Thursdays on A Compass Rose called ‘Travel Throwback’.  Every week I will dive through my travel photo archives and share with you a photograph.  One of my most favourite places that I have been to was Cambodia.  I have wanted to go there for so many years and was so excited when my parents surprised me with a trip there.   Continue reading

Take Me to Afghanistan

Day two of Blogtember states ‘If you could take three months off from your current life and do anything in the world, what would you do?

I would love to leave the comforts of my home and travel to the part of the world I have never been, the Middle East.  Specifically I would like to spend three months in Afghanistan and do two things: work with a humanitarian aid organization and tell the story of the people I meet by working as a documentary photographer.

(Pictured: Alexandra Boulat)

I remember listening to a program on NPR during my commute years ago and hearing about a journalist who befriended two girls from an Afghan brothel and ended up buying their freedom. At the same time a book was recommended to me about a woman who started a beauty school in Kabul to give women a profession after the Taliban had been disbanded.  Both of real life stories impacted me so much I was inspired to go to Cambodia with my training in hairdressing and do something similar.  Perhaps open up a school or just own a salon with apprenticeships I can give to women we rescue from the brothels there.

My parents flew me out to Cambodia on the last leg of their backpacking trip around South East Asia. It was there that I  saw with my own eyes on one street, nothing but beauty salons and barber shops side by side.  Certainly not a need for a beauty school.  We managed to choose one out of the line up and went inside to meet the girls inside.  We were with one of the missionaries working in Cambodia and the salon let me cut her hair.  They graciously let me use their equipment and experience the life of a Cambodia hairdresser. The Cambodian girl washed my friend’s hair before I cut it and the process was really interesting as it was different from what I was used to back in the US.  She wet her hair down and lathered it up with lots of suds in the chair and then had her walk over to where they would rinse it all off.

During my trip to Cambodia and meeting with missionaries there I realised the problem is more of a catch-22.  Any girls who were able to leave that lifestyle would go back due to the fact they could never make more money outside the brothel.  While I fell in love with Cambodia (and left a piece of my heart there), I realised my ideas of helping out the less fortunate with the passions I held was not going to work in this country.  Although I physically left the country on a plane, my desire to do something more still fueled inside of me.

I would love to go somewhere most people who travel never see in their lifetime. To experience life in place that is far from anything I have ‘called home’ before. To meet the people.  It makes sense that my role models are humanitarians like Audrey Hepburn and Angelina Jolie. I was very much inspired by Angelina’s onscreen work in Beyond Borders as well as her real life work documented in her book, Notes from my Travels.  With my profession in photography I love to capture the world, the people, and the details around me. To connect with life and share it with those who were not there.  As challenging as it would be, I think in the end it would be so rewarding to spend three months with aid work in Aghanistan working as documentary photographer. Yet I know that I do not have the skills now that I would need. Which led me to this video about the RISC: Reporters Instructed in Saving Collegues. This is a nonprofit organization which provides battlefield first aid training to freelance conflict journalists.

I wanted to also bring to light a photographer who has inspired me. A photojournalist from Liverpool, England who ‘photographed the experience of war from the perspective of the individual’. His name is Tim Hetherington and he was killed in 2011 while covering the conflict in Libya. His film Restrepo won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival and nominated in 2011 for Best Documentary Feature at the Academy Awards. The co-director, Sebastian Junger, is the one who started the npo, RISC.

Books I recommend: You can read more about Tim Hetherington in the book Here I Am  read about Angelina Jolie’s work as the UNHCR ambassador in Notes from My Travels  and about the women behind the veil in the book Kabul Beauty School

Q: If you had three months to do anything, what would it be and why?

On the note of photography I am pleased to introduce you to one of my new sponsors for September, Jess from Mocha Fox.  Does she not remind you of the Khalessi from Game of Thrones in the photo below?  Not just a beautiful person but a beautiful soul who loves to take her inspiration and put it into her photography.  You definitely should check out one of her favourite photo sessions entitled, ‘Water Nymph‘. I really love the way she uses the the natural light and my favourites are the ones of the model in the water. You can connect with Jess by clicking the social media links below in the image. 

Image Map

* photographs in today’s post are not owned by ACR and are sourced.

Manifold [Meet Bonnie Rose]

NEW: Newest article is now published online at Click the link below to read it.
1. WHO:
Who are you?  In 100 words or less (a hundred words usually comes out to a small paragraph). 
Who are you? The answer to that question is as easy to answer as the question, “Where are you from?”  That seemingly easy question of just four words still always gets a dramatic pause from my lips. I used to answer it simply, “No where.”  In University I was taught to embrace a more positive response of ‘everywhere’.  A bit of an exaggeration, but  provokes a smirk or chuckle from the questioner. I am a proud TCK (third culture kid…google it), a military brat, a semi-missionary kid, former military wife (still married, just not to the military), and traveler with two citizenships who holds her personal identification to 4+ countries. 

You last meal consists of two things, what is it:

Vegetables and Brown rice. I have labeled my family ‘Flexetarians’. We have been vegetarians and vegans for certain periods of our life. In the past I have been frustrated with individuals who would make fun of my vegetarian diet or question whether the way my family ate was ‘healthy’.  Or then be teased in periods when I did eat meat for not being a then strict vegan.  Labels can be annoying, especially for a girl who finds herself in the grey area of life.  To me food is more about the health benefits and my love of good tasting food. My husband and I do strive to continue to use food as fuel for our bodies and some nights may be a vegan meal, while another we may be eating fish.  The important part for us is to be flexible, and embrace new ideas and keep life enjoyable.

Two websites aside from email/facebook/twitter that you go to the most:   

I did not want to join, finally got sucked in and it is a great place to find ideas, inspiration and motivation. 
My only way to keep up with my favourite American shows since sites like Hulu, Pandora, and IHeartRadio do not work in the UK. 
Two favorite cities and why…

This is really hard for me to answer because I could easily put a number of two city combinations here.  I have traveled so much in just 29 years of life. I am going to side with emotional reasons for places being my ‘favourite’, and perhaps not the wonders that I saw. 

I say the closest to home I have is Napoli because we had the opportunity of living their twice for a total of just about six years.  During that time I have gotten to go to Lucca.  It has these Renaissance-era walls that surround the city and you can rent bicycles and ride on top of it. In the summer they have amazing artists come and I got to see James Taylor play (with Sting as his improntu guest for a song).  It is such a beautiful and historic location.
Austria. Salzburg. Innsbruck. To be quite honest, I love the whole country.  My favourite time to go is during the skiing season for snowboarding. I love the beautiful sights, the snow, and of course the food.  Germknödel anyone? 
3. What?

What do you do for a living?  

I am a mum first and foremost to two boys.  I also work as a hair designer at two salons here in Burgess Hill and Brighton. On top of that I am a freelance pro photographer who specializes in lifestyle portraiture and fashion and a makeup artist trained in airbrush makeup.  I love being creative.  

What was the first and last album you bought?

First album was Grave Dancers Union by Soul Asylum and the last one was  Lights is the debut studio album Lights by English recording artist Ellie Goulding.

What is your nickname, how did it come about?

‘BonBon’ is the nickname most people come up with who become close acquaintances or friends in my life.   I have a close friend who calls me Bonzai. Not sure how he came about with that one, but I like it a lot. My sister calls me ‘B’ which I may prefer over Bonnie.

What tattoos do you have if any?

After my father passed away I got his plane tattooed on my forearm, an F-111E.  Without meaning too I have added to the tattoo by burning my arm on an iron while protecting my kids from it.  Now my plane looks like it has a jet stream leaving it. I also have an outline of a black star on my right foot by the toes for my Esther, my favourite female in the bible.

4. IF.
If you could anywhere in the world, all expenses paid, where would you go?

New Zealand. Closely followed by Russia and Morocco.  I chose New Zealand because it was one of the those places I wish I had gone when I went backpacking around Australia.  I am a huge avid fan of Tolkien’s books like the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.  Having seen the films many times over I would love to go see those beautiful landscapes in person.

If you could only pick one person to go with you on this trip who would it be?

My partner Ryan.  The last place we got to go on a real trip to was Thailand back when I was pregnant with our first child.  We were there for the summer doing mission work and helping Thais practice their English.  Since then I have gotten to go back to Thailand and go to Cambodia. My husband has gotten to go explore Japan shortly after the tsunami last year and is going to Marrakech, Morocco shortly with his classmates from University.  I look forward to getting to actually getting to go on travels and trips with him around the world together.  It is a passion of mine and something we have not gotten to do much of with his previous commitments with the military.

If your friends were to describe you what would they say?

It might depend who you ask and what country they are from to say how they would describe me.  In England, I am perceived as an American. In the USA I was perceived as not really American but a girl from Europe. Despite whatever cultural differences people may describe about me I would think they would say that I was passionate, creative, driven, and loving mother.

Where can we get a hold of you:  Here’s where you give us all your links: