Tuesday, December 31, 2013

අසිරිමත් දැයක් හඟිනා දරැවනට දිවි නැගුමට, නව වසරට පැතුමක්...


විසල් මහල් යානවාන
කැලේ කැපෙන මහ වැඩ ගොඩ
අලි ඇතුන්ට මියෑදෙන්න
විදුලි රැහැන් පණ ගැනිලා

සෙරන්ඩිබ්ය කියා ලිව්ව
මුතු ඇටයක හැඩය අරන්
මගෙ ලක්බිම පුරාණයේ
අසිරිය මුලු ලොවක් දුටුව

මනුස්සකම මියෑදිච්ච
යහපත් කම පෑලදොරට
විකුනාගෙන කා බී සුඛ
විහරනයෙන් මුලා වෙච්ච

ඉතිරිය නොව වියදම සොඳ
නාස්තියට ඉනිමං බැඳ
සොබා සිරිය උකසට දී
බයිලා නටන දැයක්ද අප

වෙදදුරැවරැ විකුනනවා
ගුරැ සඟ ඝන විකිනෙනවා
මත් උවදුර දලු ලාගෙන
යොවුන් සිහින බිලි අරගෙන

බීමත ගෙන ගෙදරට එන

පියාණනේ කරනා වින
සමගිය බිඳ කුඩාවුන්ගෙ
ඉගෙනුම අනතුරේ හෙලන

කුඩා එවුන් ගෙදර දමා
රන් කහවනු සොයනා මඟ
වැටෙනා නොරටුන්ගෙ රටක
උකසට දෙන මව් සෙනෙහස

අනේ! පුතේ
, අනේ! දුවේ
මනස විවර කර බලන්න
විචාරයෙන් ලොව මනින්න
අඳුර බිඳින එළිය වන්න

මහන්සිවී කටයුතු කර
මනුස්සකම සිරස දරා
ඔබ හැදිලා යසට රහට
රටත්, දැයත් සදා ලන්න!
දැයේ මහිම බෙදා ලන්න!
ලිව්වෙ රෙන්ටන් ද අල්විස්
2013, දෙසැම්බර 31 වනදා

Annual event to recognise artistic, literary and educational excellence - Kiula Kiyawana Gunaya Free Mobile Library Service

 
 

 




The Kiula Kiyawana Gunaya Mobile Library Service held its annual event to recognise artistic, literary and educational excellence among its members, on Sunday the 29th December. The event was held at the modest hall of the Kiula Junior School. The guests of honour were Prof. Upali Vidanapathirana, the former Vice Chancellor of the Open University and the Derana Most Popular Actor of 2012 Mr. Roshan Ranawana. They both shared valuable thoughts with our members and gave away prizes. Mr. Kamal Jayatileka, the Director, Physical Education of the Lycium International School, Colombo and a friend from childhood of Roshan's. Also in attendance were the Divisional Secreatary, Ambalantota, the Divisional Cultural Officer and the Principals of the Kiula Junior School and the Bolana Model School.
For all the pictures of the event please visit:

https://www.facebook.com/rentondealwis/media_set?set=a.10151865512311966.1073741838.560176965&type=1

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The famous Pacha Gaha of Galle


I was recently at the Galle Fort and parked my car at the square by the Court complex. Enthralled by the Pacha Gaha – Fibber’s tree, that stood majestically at the corner of that square, I recalled this article I had read many years ago (It appeared in 2004 in a Saturday Island). Since I had my iPad with me, I captured the beauty of this masterpiece of our heritage and am presenting them for you together with the story written by Mr. Godwin Withane. I invite you to enjoy it.   

The famous Pacha Gaha of Galle
by Godwin Witane

Among the objects that are significant and famous in this world are sometimes mountains, rivers and trees and various other things that people very often thinks they are unique. For instance people speak of the Seven Wonders of the World. Among the oldest trees in the world we reckon the Sacred Bo Tree at Anuradhapura as famous in the Buddhist world. The river Ganges in India is a sacred river for the Hindus. We in Sri Lanka adore the mountain Sri Pada as sacred in the world.

However have you herd of the Pacha Gaha of Galle. Although it is one among the common shady trees in the island, it has become famous and significant for the main reason that it affords a useful service to man. It stands on the outskirts of the Galle harbour. It is a rendezvous for a galaxy of human beings. Its shade is a great boon to anyone who needs the shade over one’s head.

A variety of people find umbrage under this tree. Among them are palm readers, who invite every passer by to get his or her palm read. The gullible individual is tempted by the suave calling often to learn about the expected fortune predicted by this cunning individual. This tree is situated on the road to the Law courts in Galle Fort and most litigants fall pray to this individual tone.

The other person who reside under this tree is the vendor of medicinal oil. When a cluster of people pass by he displays his store of bottles containing the medicinal oil. This oil he announces cures many an ailment. His vocabulary is so tacit and inviting that many an unsuspecting passer by is induced to buy a sample of oil for it is predicted that it serves to alleviate a host of ailments, which normally man is subjected to. It is a well-known fact that the street vendors of medicinal oil palm off coloured coconut oil or gingerly oil. Another person who takes advantage of a small crowd formed under the Pacha Gaha is the acrobat dressed is a patched up coloured dress. Sometimes he uses a bicycle to display his stunts to the flabbergasted crowd. After the show he passes round the hat for donations when those who witness the event surreptitiously and slowly evade the turn and proceed away from the scene.

There is one other claimant of the broadside of this famous tree who mounting on a soap box starts speaking to the air. When an attractive crowd gathers he most eloquently preach on an alluring topic once the speech is over the people who were in the audience most charitably make monetary contributions to this man who in no way implored for it.

Thus unscrupulous people make their living through "Pacha". These various people find the shade of the Pacha Gaha a stage to display their individual effects in procuring an effortless living though more tolerable than committing crimes which are much more serious than these harmless undertakings. While the Galle Pacha Gaha affords a convenient platform for blatant liars the present day embroils in this period of election fever most aspirants display their frivolous lies "Pacha" to entice gullible voters to accord them in to their camps. Most people called these attempts "Pata Pal Boru".



 








 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Memories of the Keleniya University Cricket Tour of Jaffna 1968.

 
 
I was looking for some old files and came across these photos of our University Cricket Team's Tour of Jaffna in 1968. Brings back lots of memories of the good times we had. We had GK  Haththotuwegama as our Cricket coach, Late MM Sathyawadi as Captain and yours truly as his deputy. We played two games with the Jaffmna College Undergraduate Department at the Bicknell Gorunds, With Aryalai Sports Club at St. Patrick College Grounds and with Sri Lanka Navy at their Karainagar Camp grounds. I recall all the Kallu we drank in the evenings and the sweet toddy in the early morn. The prawns, crabs and the kiri appum a la Jaffna style. The fellowship was great and we were all one. I now wonder why all that had to change?
 
 
Shelton, me, Late Satthi & Dissa 
 

 

 




 
 
 
 
 

 

 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

My daughter Samanthika ... journeying from Business to Nursing




My elder daughter Samanthika, with her colleagues at the Mercy Hospital, Springfield, Missouri before she returned to San Francisco to take up a position with the Sutter Hospital Group where she will be back again with her husband Bharatha.


Here is what one of her colleagues had to say about her. It brought a tear to my eyes. Am so proud and happy. You made huge sacrifices Duwa and Thank you Bharatha, for the support you always gave her. She changed her career path after 15 years working in Business (first degree in international business), went back to Nursing school at the San Francisco University and armed with a Post graduate degree in Nursing became a RN.

Olga Abreu posted to Samanthika de Alwis’s Face Book page on
20 November via Mobile.


“I wanted to write about my experience working with Sam. Sam has many amazing qualities which makes her a great nurse. But one of them really stands out. At the time I couldn't find Sam. When I was looking for her, I found her in the patient room talking to her patients, explaining their situation and offering a word of advice. Lunch missed, staying late to finish charting- it didn't matter to her. Her patients came first. Doing her job and often the job of others for that patient was her priority. Taking patients to the bathroom, offering coffee and water could be done by someone else. But she didn't look for other person, she did it herself. This is the quality I most respect in her- sacrificing her needs for the needs of others. I will miss you but I know that your journey is only at a start of the wonderful nursing career. Godspeed, dear Sam! I'll miss you greatly!


Lindsay Mitchell-Townsend posted to Samanthika de Alwis FB Page 23 November via Mobile
"Sam! I just wanted to drop you a quick note to tell you I miss you, but I am so glad you're back home with your husband! You are going to be such a huge blessing to your patients and their families! Expect a visit sometime in the next year!"

 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A story I must tell ...

I have a story to share with my friends. Two weeks ago Monday we visited the only Blind Elders Home in Sri Lanka at Godawaya, Ambalantota for our annual almsgiving for the Home's blind elders. The 27 elders at the Home range in age from 50 to 95.... Several others whom I knew over the years are now no more and a few lived beyond 100. The caring at the home by its dedicated care giver Latha miss (Ms. Latha) is amazing. A writer friend of mine once referred to her as a Bodhisathava (a Buddha in the making.)

When we were there Kusumawathi, an elder who is both blind and severely hard of hearing brought her hearing aid to us and asked to get it repaired for it had stopped working. I had once before, with the help of my friend Mr. Chandra Jayaratne got it repaired at the Services Centre for the Hearing Impaired located at Rajagiriya. I brought it there again last week and was told that the circuit was faulty beyond repair. A new hearing aid was costing between Rs 28,000 to 40,000, I was told.

I casually mentioned this to my friend Rotarian Supem de Silva. I called him to give my regards to him and his family, for I was in Colombo. He promptly said that there was a Rotary Project in Kandy that was issuing hearing aids and he would explore if he could get one for Blind Elder Kusumawathi. Within minutes he called me and said the Kandy Rotary Club was willing to donate one for her. That was last week Thursday. Upon an exchange of emails and my sending by email her prescription that same evening, the very next day, the club's team informed that they were sending it by courier to me, as I was returning back to my home in Kiula that day. It was done and I was able to hand over the hearing Aid on Monday this week (yesterday) and when it was worn by Blind Elder Kusumawathi, her eyes were filled with tears. She was so thrilled she gave merit to all and to those at the 'Hotala Club Kandy' meaning Rotary Club Kandy, for she was still getting used to her brand new instrument.

I am relating this story to pay my tribute and express my gratitude to the Rotary Club Kandy and to Rotarians, Supem, Jaliya, Gowry and to Daphne of the team that made it happen so swiftly. Thank you and in Blind Elder Kusumawathis's own words, 'Hamotama Niwan Sapa Labewa!'

I am aware that such things happen all the time among us. But yet I thought I must share this with you for this to me and to the Blind Elders at the Godawaya home is a memorable event of immense kindness and dedication to service.

In the picture are Blind Elder Kusumawathi and Latha miss.
 
 

Monday, November 18, 2013

ඉනික්බිති

රැසිරැ වරණින් සැදුනු සූසැට සමුලු මංගල     පාවුනා
දසත සිට ආ නේක දන මන බැන්ද කාරන   සිදුවුනා
අපට වින කල කරන කියනා මන්ද කාරණ මඳ වුනා
අපේ හදවත දැවෙන ගිණි සිඳ මදක් අවසර   යාවුනා

ඉනික්බිති අප කරන කාරිය සැමට සුවදෙන ඉඩක්            වේවා
දනට වැඩ වන බියෙන් තොර වුන දැහැමි ගුණ පිරි දැයක් වේවා
දමිළ යෝණක සිහළ උරැමය එකට කැටි වුනු රටක්         වේවා
මගේ මව් බිමෙ සියලු දන මන නිවුන ගුණයෙන් අසිරි      වේවා


ලිව්වෙ රෙන්ටන් ද අල්විස්


 

The truth

by Renton de Alwis


In that distant cry of a peahen
I hear the sounds of shackles breaking
singing "freedom's just another word
for nothing left to loose" yes!
nothing's left to be lost
or to be found again
for love in all its yonder
have fallen off the trees
like those leafy leaves twirling
swaying in the breezy wind
now lay still to be consumed
by the next falling rain



 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Proud to be Sri Lankan and an open 'letter' to David Cameron ....



















Rt. 'Honourable' David Cameron, PM with UK's (what I think is a rouge) media outfit Channel 4, has gone out of the way to prove a point to a group of electoral constituents back home with extremist views. I as an ordinary Sri Lankan citizen, who does not hold any allegiance to anyone except my Motherland, stand insulted and extremely hurt, by your unwarranted behaviour as an invited guest to my country to attend the CHOGAM summit. I question the sincerity of your love for my Tamil brethren in Sri Lanka and propose that what you are doing is mere gimmickry.
We are a hospitable people and do not expect our guests to treat us this way. You forgot and continue to forget that my Motherland is an independent nation since 1948, and chose to be a founder member of The Commonwealth. We did not hold any grudges about the atrocities that were committed by colonial invaders during the British occupation of this country. We focussed only on the good that was done during that time and never asked that, leaders of the now UK be accountable or provide us with apologies or pay compensation to the many victims who lost their lives, their land and more than that their dignity as a people from 1802 to 1948. Instead we chose, even in this hostile environment, to take on the leadership of this organisation and you came here invited to attend its summit to represent all your people and not just a section of a self serving and misdirected electoral constituency.

You  heard our President tell you that we now have restored the most important human right of being able to live without the fear of loosing one's life as a result of terrorist bombs or bullets. The media also heard him say that while such are all mere news items to them for us Sri Lankans, it was a matter of life and death. And that is the stark reality we faced for over three decades and you would not understand how all that feels, for you were busy looking for 'evidence' to prosecute other nations and ensure that they were destroyed and their citizens suffered (and continue to suffer) by providing erroneous information to the US and your other allies.

We are thankful to the Prime Minsters of Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, New Zealand and leaders of the vast majority of the other nations attending this summit with a positive outlook, for understanding the realities and challenges we face, pledges of support and for believing that Sri Lanka as a nation can indeed move towards prosperity and have a "better tomorrow than today". I sincerely believe that we can achieve our own just aspirations to be a prosperous nation. A nation where regardless of race, status or belief, we all can live together in harmony, resolving any issues we face through dialogue and discussion and not through the exercise of might or power. What we ask is to be treated as equals and not for any other nation to play big brother attempting to force your will on us.


I also move as a Sri Lankan to deplore the pathetic behaviour of some sections of the leading opposition party in deciding not to participate at an occasion that meant so much to me as a citizen of Sri Lanka. You have demonstrated with your jeering and even creating hurtful situations from the side lines, that you with such sad 'leadership' are unworthy of being elected to represent us ever again.

As much as I am proud to be Sri Lankan at this moment in our history, I am also sad that we have in our midst persons that act with such irresponsibility and callousness. As someone who does not belong to any political or other interest group, I understand that there is much our leaders in all sincerity must work on together, to make things better for all Sri Lankans. I also feel the pain of mind and the sadness in the hearts of the families of those who lost their lives during the 30 years of conflict and terrorism, all around this country including the North. Some among them had taken up arms being misled by the terrorists and others were innocent civilians. They latter were victims of terrorism and the resultant war waged against it. We must never ever again make such mistakes and must work in unison to ensure that all Sri Lankans can live with dignity and pride in the future. But that is a resolve we must have and not one that should be imposed on us for such will only delay that process imposing divisive mind barriers among sections of our population. 


I call on all who value the truth and what is right to prevail to ensure to rise and call whenever a wrong is done, or when the good of the many is violated. Yet, it is our duty and responsibility by our Motherland to work together to ensure that what is right is done.



Friday, November 15, 2013

A find Blend (A repost)


මිනිස් අයිතිය

රකින්නට වෙහෙසෙනා මිනිසුන්ගෙ      අයිතියට
හඬක් දෙන්නට හැකිද වියරැ වුනු          මිනිසුනට
රැකිය යුතු රැකිය හැකි මිනිස්කම ගෙන       සිතට
හලමු අත පොලු මුගුරැ මනස         රජ කරන්නට

උඩ බලන් ගසන කෙළ පිඩුව යලි        පතිත වන
වුවන ඔබගේම මිස වෙන කෙනෙකු බව නොවන
සිතා නොම කරනු වින කිලිටි වන       ලක වුවන
මිනිස්කම රකින්නට මිනිස් ගුණ         වඩනු මැන

රට දැයට මට වඩා පෙම බඳින              විරැවනට
සහන් සිත් අරාගෙන දයාගුණ              වැඩුවනට
කියන දේ කරන දේ යහ සිතින්            කරන්නට
වෙර දිරිය ලැබේවා දෑ සමය                රකින්නට



රෙන්ටන් ද අල්විස් ලිව්වෙ

Thursday, November 14, 2013

ඔබේ ලොවේ සරසන්න

පවසන්න, පවසන්න
මුදු වදන් පවසන්න
සරසන්න
, සරසන්න
මුවභසින් සරසන්න


හිස් වදන්, බොළඳ බස්
නොකියාම සැනසෙන්න
ඔබ ලොවේ හසරලින්
මගෙ ලොවත් සරසන්න


ආදරය, කරැණාව
ඔබ ගෙලේ පළඳන්න
සත් සිතින් මෙත් ගුණය
පුරා සිත වපුරන්න

සොබා දම් මවුන් කුස
තුරැලු වී නිදියන්න
අවදියෙන් විමසියෙන්
හැම දෙයම දැක ගන්න

සරන මග සරසන්න
සිත් සතන් සනසන්න
මගෙ දුවේ
, ඔබ ලොවේ
හැමදාම රජ වන්න
.
රෙන්ටන් ද අල්විස් ලිව්වෙ





Last night's rain


Sunday, November 10, 2013

You were wonderful ...

                



Witnessed the opening ceremonies of both events on TV and what I saw gave me much joy and pride as a Sri Lankan. Congratulations Sri Lanka. The differently abled, the child who spoke on behalf of Sri Lanka, our President's opening remarks and the choice of items of entertainment was apt and meaningful. Thank You all who are making such possible.

එදා මෙදා සුසුම

එදා සුසුමයි මෙදා සුසුමයි
එකම සුසුමද බෙදුනු අඩ
සදා දවනා ගින්න කුස තුල
ලන්න ඕනද දරා මල්ඵල
පහන නිවුනද හිමි සඳුගෙ ගුණ
සරා සිත මා පහල වූවද
කුඩාවුන් හට පිහිටවන්නට
යන්න වෙනවා සරා මහමග

හිමිට මිස අන් වෙනත් අයෙකුට
නොවුන ගැති මා කිසිම දවසක
සිරැර සලලුන් උකස් කරනට
ඔට්ටුවූයේ සුසුම් හිර කොට
උන්ගෙ දහඩිය දුඟද මතකය
මුදල් කොල මත අත්ල ගුලි කොට
අරන් හනිකට පැලට දිව්වේ
කුඩාවුන්හට අහර පිසිනට

කුරිරැ වදනින් මනස පෙලුවද
දනන් මා ගත උරා ගත්තද
වෛර ගින්නෙන් දැවෙන මා සිත
උන් දවන්නට රිසි වුනේ නැත
කුඩාවුන් වුවනත සිනහව
මකාලයි ම කුරිරැ මතකය
එදා සුසුමයි මෙදා සුසුමයි
එකම සුසුමක බෙදුනු අඩ ඵල.


රෙන්ටන් ද අල්විස් ලිව්වෙ


Of a Summit