The Day I Threw A Grenade

by Brenna Holeman

Phnom Penh, Cambodia

I threw a grenade on one of my last days in Cambodia. It was something I would have never thought of doing, but the person I was travelling with at the time was very keen to do it. Once I got there, it was one of those when-will-I-ever-do-this-again kind of situations (much like when I shot guns in Latvia), so I decided to just go for it! I was extremely nervous before throwing it but it really did provide an adrenaline rush (despite the relatively small explosion). The “little click” I’m referring to at the end occurs at 45 seconds, which is when the safety was released. Note that my training was simply throwing a rock into the pond… and that I insisted on doing it twice (the first was off-camera).

From that day in May until very recently, I wore the pin from the grenade around my neck, a reminder of my days on the road and of the unexpected events that take place when you travel. Whether it be a dish you’ve never tried before, a conversation with a stranger, or throwing a grenade into a small Cambodian pond, I always look forward to those little surprises that travel (and life in general) holds in store… if, of course, you are open to them.

By the way, I would like to point out to my mother that yes, I also wish I would have stood up straighter.

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Christine loves to Travel December 19, 2011 - 10:08 pm

You’re a brave girl! That’s pretty scary.

This Battered Suitcase December 20, 2011 - 6:17 am

Thanks, Christine!

kay* December 20, 2011 - 10:24 am

can i just say, for the record, that i absolutely ADORE your style! seriously – i have a bit of jewelry envy now and plan on hitting up the markets after work…my collection of bangles is quite impressive but i need some more rings!

and i love your pant/jumper/romper…have a similar one that i wear the same way…well, around my flat i wear it like that – on the streets people would stare!


This Battered Suitcase December 21, 2011 - 1:49 am

Ha ha, thanks Kisha! I haven’t worn the genie pants as a romper in Canada yet…but I plan to when it warms ups again. I do constantly wear all of my jewellery, though! I think that all of my bracelets, necklaces, rings, and earrings are my favourite souvenirs from travelling. I love looking down at my wrist and seeing bracelets from a bunch of different countries, or looking in the mirror and seeing earrings from India! The simple pleasures in life…

renee December 21, 2011 - 4:14 am

I notice the same thing in photos… as does my mother. Must work on posture….

This Battered Suitcase December 21, 2011 - 9:01 am

Me too – I say this as I’m hunched over the computer……..

Oneika December 25, 2011 - 2:38 pm

You are so pretty and I love your style!

This Battered Suitcase December 26, 2011 - 8:55 am

Aw, thank you Oneika!

BakoymaTravels October 1, 2013 - 12:36 am

Ok, sorry about the stupid question coming up, but is this something one can do in Cambodia..? Not like a “get in line” tourist attraction, but did you get to do this because someone knew someone or was it offered someplace?

I kinda want to try 😉

Brenna October 1, 2013 - 3:48 pm

I had to ask my tuk-tuk driver/guide for the day, and he knew where to take me. It was an old military base that was converted into a shooting range, but I didn’t see any other tourists there. I hope that helps!

BakoymaTravels October 1, 2013 - 10:11 pm

It absolutely does, thanks! 🙂


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