I would be remiss if I didn’t start this blog with: “And what a year it has been…” Despite everyone saying it multiple times this year, it doesn’t make it any less true.
Gearing up for change
Even without COVID, 2020 was always going to be a year of transition for Phnom Climb. Mary and Christoph’s (our founders/owners) departure from Cambodia (to move back to Switzerland) was fast approaching, and the gym’s future was somewhat up in the air. Whatever was decided in terms of ownership and management, transition was looming.
The year started out normal – strong actually. The team had reached a milestone of 100 members in February, and 2020 was projected to be the best financial year of the gym thus far. We also hosted the first-ever Sva Prey Bouldering Competition! This brought together competitors from Thailand, Siem Reap and Phnom Penh, not to mention an awesome route-setting team from Malaysia!
March was definitely the turning point!
In the span of 3 weeks, 4 major things happened:
Now, the questions were: What do we do to ensure the gym survives this closure, and what would the team do in the meantime?
Happy, happy summer!
Summer was another drastic 180! In the past, summers were always slower months for the gym given that school programs had ended and many expat families and adults would leave for summer vacation. COVID obviously changed all this, and our summer months were packed with kids coming to climb every day! Our coaches regularly had to double up on shifts!
And now for 2021…
Three closures in one year would make anyone nervous, and I was often asked by our community members: “Are things back to normal?” My response was always to awkwardly laugh-shrug and say: “I don’t know what normal is…I started this job and COVID immediately hit. THIS is my normal!”
But if anything is clear, this was a year of change and milestones - good and bad, often so intertwined you couldn’t tell the difference.
2021 is uncertain - there is no point of reference, no baseline, no crystal ball. We can only continue to work our a$$es off and be cautiously optimistic (aka. realistically hopeful). Moving forward is the only way to go, and we’ll have to wait and see what new milestones lay ahead (alongside a few obstacles...just to keep things interesting)!
Celebrating PCCG's 5-year anniversary in October!