A street sweepers twig broom lies waiting next to a decaying wall. Both common sights in Phnom Penh. Handmade twig brooms have been used for centuries to sweep caves, castles, wooden huts and log cabins. Brooms made out of straw, hay, twigs, corn husks were not very robust nor efficient. It did not take much for the end of the broom to become detached and end up on the other side of the room during a sweeping session probably leading to the utterance of whatever curse words were in vogue at the time and so the phrase 'flying off the handle' was born.