It was not a white van without number plates that he saw in the rear-view mirror but a blue Pajero. They too were troubled times, and though it was 20 years ago, the memories are vivid as ever…….not only of the abduction, the severe torture and the trauma that the end was nigh but also the tiny glimpses of humanity in the midst of the horror which gradually made him think that all was not lost. Those touches of humanity are the very lure for this now respected psychiatrist who has established himself in England and globe-trots to all parts of the world as an eminent speaker, to keep coming back to his motherland.
Since the birth of the 20 anacondas at the Dehiwela Zoo there has been an extraordinary flow of newspaper reports on the subject. With it has come references to the possible derivation of the name anaconda from the Sinhala henakandaya — garnered from Webster’s and elsewhere - but no proper explanation. Readers with good memories may remember I wrote an extended article on the subject published in The Sunday Times of June 25, and July 2 & 9, 2000, and those who possess my book Sindbad in Serendib (2008) will have access to that article in chapter-form.