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TSRUK Supporters



 

The Siam View Hotel team
Aragum Bay, Sri Lanka
By email

On Christmas Day the hotel had a wonderful and well received Full Moon Party. In keeping with tradition we always celebrate the day and all night before the actual Full Moon.

The party finished at around sunrise and the DJ guys were very lucky to load up the sound, vision and smoke equipment because their truck was the last one to pass over our bridge into safety at around 09:00 on Boxing Day.

The hotel was full, everyone was still asleep (or drunk, stoned or whatever the case may be) when our old, loyal and ultra-wise gardener, Shelton, noticed something strange about the sea. First it withdrew and then it returned, flooding our beach house, palm trees, house boat etc. Shelton ran around waking everyone up and saved their lives no doubt. We are all indebted to him.

The last and very huge (approx. 13 meters or 40ft) wave was the real killer here at abaY and having seen all the news reels and TV footage there has not been a bigger one anywhere else on the globe. After all, abaY is a known surf spot and gets BIG waves in normal times; if a real big one comes it will hit us most for sure, specially on the east coast!

The first outside help we received as a community was from a rapid response team of the French Military. They came, done what was most urgent and left after two days. The French Red Cross arrived on Thursday 6th January. They camp at the Siam View and a field hospital is being set up.

Arugam Bay as you know it is no more; all the beach side properties have been demolished. We are still cut off because the bridge is damaged; it may take half a year or more to repair. Also of course there is no electricity and no land line phone, internet, fax or data line in Arugam Bay right now. Most internal conflicts have already disappeared: No Tamils appear to fight with others, Hakkeem is sober for a change, fishing folk disputes seem distant, land problems sorted, former enemies are suddenly big surviving friends and so on.....

We wanted to show everyone that life goes on, and the original post-Tsunami sign in our bar still stands:

This is not the end folks! It is the best chance we ever had to make a fresh start, a new and much better beginning for us all

There is always a light at the end of a tunnel: Here in abaY we can see a very bright light already; with your international help! Thanks to you all!
From all of us here.

:: YOUR STORIES::

In 2004, we had the best holiday of our lives, spending some weeks in Arugam Bay on the east coast of Sri Lanka. We learned a lot experienced so much more than we bargained for and lived moments that money canít buy. Everywhere we went people were inquisitive, friendly and incredibly keen to help. Most of them spent their lives in poverty, living from day to day , but they never stopped smiling. We left many new friends when we returned to England. My intention was to return this year and continue to study Buddhism and eastern style meditation, do some voluntary teaching and in the long term, introduce counselling and hypnotherapy. For reasons well known to you all, our help is needed immediately. I am going to Arugam Bay to help this isolated community. We suspect that many of our friends are dead and that those that survived are battling against the worst conditions imaginable. I have been in touch with one of the survivors through the only telephone remaining. So far, eight days after the tsunami hit, the bridge to bay has been badly damaged and is still unusable, they have received almost no help from anyone outside of the community and they are running out of water.
Aleksandra Kendel, Exeter