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Lament for a littered ‘lake’

Lament for a littered ‘lake’

The messenger bird in the 15th century epic poem- Selalihini Sandeshaya (Grackle Letter) composed by the monk scholar Ven.  Thotagamuwe Sri Rahula Thera pays homage to the fauna and flora of the Kotte Kingdom as it soars into the blue skies. The legend says that the grackle carried a letter to God Vishnu who reigned [...]

Are you born or Kohomada?

Are you born  or Kohomada?

I wonder if it has come to your notice, like it has come to mine, that “Foreigners” (tourists) visiting our lovely country say and do rather funny things. I was in the chaotic ticket office queue at Colombo Fort Railway Station at 0600hrs trying to get tickets to Kandy and there were two obviously foreign [...]

Rekava: Lester’s ‘line of destiny’

Rekava: Lester’s ‘line of destiny’

In his Dickman’s Road (most of us still refer to it by the old name) residence, Lester James Peries had two favourite places to sit and chat. One was his front ‘office room’ (in the old jargon) and the other the easy chair in a corner behind the dining table. He always looked quite relaxed. [...]

Local fare adds new aromas to Grande Gourmet at Nirj’s

Local fare adds new aromas to Grande Gourmet at Nirj’s

Only about a year after its opening, “Grande Gourmet at Nirj’s” welcomed two more additions this December. “Café Ceylon” and the “Scottish Bar” were opened to a select crowd of delighted diners on December 16. “Grande Gourmet at Nirj’s” has made itself at home down Horton Place, offering cuisines from various countries namely French and [...]

Kaziranga: Roaming in Rhino land

Kaziranga: Roaming in Rhino land

One of India’s most popular national parks, the Kaziranga National Park is 430 square kilometres. It is well known for its Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis), Elephants (Elepha smaximus), Tigers (Panthera tigris) and a variety of birds including many migrants. Kaziranga is also a World Heritage site. Whilst at Kaziranga I had the rare pleasure of meeting [...]

Homestay that conjures up paradise on earth

Homestay that conjures up paradise on earth

“Homestay” is a scheme introduced by Sri Lankan Tourism with the declared intention of encouraging “local residents to open their homes to paying guests enabling tourists to live in a homely environment and to experience local customs and traditions.” In other words, it’s a contemporary branding of the good, old fashioned hospitality concept of “bed [...]

Remembering sacrifices made to restore serendipity

Remembering sacrifices made to restore serendipity

‘Oh! Sri Lanka- smile! Your children will survive. Heavy clouds will pass as calm seas return; The far horizon is tinged with golden hues of hope that breathes on the bravery of men Changing winds fan the air and the breeze caresses The sweating brow of a land blessed in abundance, Ours to nurture and [...]

Saving cattle from slaughter: Are we making the butcher richer?

Saving cattle from  slaughter: Are we making the  butcher richer?

All animals are sentient beings, with a right to life free from cruelty. However, it is cattle that are mostly saved from slaughter. As the Cattle Protection Trust, an organisation dedicated to cattle welfare states, cattle have for centuries supported farmers to plough fields, given milk to nourish us and drawn overloaded carts for man’s [...]

Unravelling the discovery of ancient Buddhist scrolls

Unravelling the  discovery of  ancient Buddhist scrolls

From the point of view of history, Christianity and Islam have certain advantages over Buddhism. Both Jesus and Muhammed lived in cultures where writing was well-known and widely used. Writing was almost certainly unknown in India during the Buddha’s lifetime and did not come into use for perhaps 150 years after his passing. Of course [...]

A timely book on condominium living

A timely book on condominium living

Chairman of the Condominium Management Authority C.A. Wijeyeweere has released a book, ‘Condominium Living: The Emerging Trend’. The intricacies of condominium living are innumerable and the author has strived to educate condominum owners, occupants, developers and condominum management companies on the importance of this new trend. Mr. Wijeyeweere has produced this book to enhance people’s [...]

NONA: Jolted by a personal tragedy a young man reaches out

NONA: Jolted by a personal tragedy a young man reaches out

Nirmal Samantha Van Oort was adopted when he was just six weeks old and grew up with his adoptive parents in Netherlands, never knowing who his biological parents were. A visit to Sri Lanka in 2001 when he was 18 gave him the answers he was looking for, but they were not the ones he [...]

All set for Prep Walk and Fun Fair

The community of St. Thomas Preparatory School, Kollupitiya- students, teachers, parents, old boys and well wishers will come together on January 28 for the Prep Walk and Fun Fair 2017. The event is being planned to strengthen the bonds of camaraderie and to raise funds to renovate the school’s very first building ‘Fortrose’ which was [...]

Good news hits the paper stands

The ‘Only Good News Paper’, the country’s first ever tri-lingual newspaper that contains only good news, was launched last month to inspire Sri Lankans to look beyond the negativity and go for greatness. Created by the not-for-profit NGO Foundation of Goodness and dairy brand Anchor, the Only Good News Paper highlights the stories of ordinary [...]

HSG: One stop shop for household items and more

HSG: One stop shop for household items and more

Launching their new and improved outlet, Home Store Gallery (HSG) in Dehiwala offers customers the opportunity to personalise their homes with a new range of items with four featured sections in the store. HSG, which initially started as a family business supplying wallpapers imported from Germany has expanded their range of items which are now [...]

The Christmas story retold at Daya Mina

The Christmas story retold at Daya Mina

Daya Mina held their annual Christmas concert with enthusiastic participation from all their young  people in retelling the Christmas story. Day Mina, run by the Sisters of Charity provides vocational training for  differently abled young people over the age of 14 to help them reach their true potential and integrate into their family and community. [...]

The writer no one took notice of until he won the Man Asia Literary prize

The writer no one took notice of until he won the Man Asia Literary prize

In English, the title of Miguel Syjuco’s critically acclaimed book, Ilustrado, means “enlightened one.” During the 19th century, it referred to the Philippines’ Europe-educated literati, whose revolutionary ideas helped establish the foundations for Asia’s first democracy. Two hundred years later, expatriate Filipino author Syjuco has put a modern spin on this dated term. Born and [...]

Margaret Drabble won’t be attending

Celebrated author Margaret Drabble will not be attending the Fairway Galle Literary Festival 2017 due to pressing personal issues, the Festival organisers announced in a press release issued earlier this week. “Ms. Drabble expressed her deep disappointment at not being able to come, as she was truly looking forward to being in Sri Lanka and [...]

Galloping through an entertaining and sometimes sinister read

Galloping through  an entertaining and  sometimes sinister read

I expect many Sri Lankan writers (both manqué and passé) eager to comment will snap at the bait of this latest novel to bob to the surface of the island’s literary wash by the pseudonymous author, Ashok Ferrey. Perhaps because Ferrey is an author in the modern mode who relentlessly promotes his books, he seems [...]

CJS 95 years of glamour proves diamonds are forever

CJS 95 years of glamour proves diamonds are forever

Unveiling a new collection that embraces the quintessence of the CJS legacy, Colombo Jewellery Stores celebrated 95 years of timeless glamour with Chairman Akram Cassim hosting a glittering event at the CJS flagship store at Alfred House Gardens recently. While showcasing the 95 designs created specifically for this anniversary, the spotlight fell on three magnificent [...]

Unwind with a cuppa at tea lounge at Waters Edge

Unwind with a cuppa at tea lounge at Waters Edge

The Tea Lounge at Water’s  Edge was declared open on November 20 by Minister of Megapolis and Western Development Patali Champika Ranawaka, Chairman of Waters Edge Chamath de Silva, the Board of Directors, Director Sales and Marketing Nirekshe Perera, and the hospitality team of Waters Edge. The Tea Lounge at the Edge embraces the Dilmah [...]

Crystal beauties

Crystal beauties

Preethi Fernando reopened  ‘Crystals’, her Crystal Boutique in December offering a high quality range made in Italy, Germany, U.K. and Ireland. Chairman Maliban Biscuit Company A.G. R Samaraweera was chief guest at the opening. The range includes wine glasses, cocktail glasses, champagne flutes, bowls and trays, vases, candle holders, frames etc, priced from Rs 3000 [...]

Adding their voices to the seasonal cheer

Adding their voices to the seasonal cheer

The air was buzzing with conversation and laughter as waiters dressed in white served a sumptuous meal. Throughout the hall, the sound of people enjoying themselves could be heard. This was the setting to which the De Lanerolle brothers performed their recent concert, ‘Together for Christmas’. However, when the songs were being performed, not a [...]

RAMP, a unique space for designers

RAMP, a unique  space for designers

RAMP, the recently launched designer store is making a statement. ‘RAMP’ unveiled its designer boutique featuring some of Colombo’s established and breakout fashion designers on Level 2 in the newly refurbished Liberty Plaza. Ramp offers a collection of inspiring designs, exquisite jewellery, ladies shoes, as well as an exclusive collection of men’s and women’s undergarments. [...]

Appreciations

RANJITH GURUGE A maverick by nature he was a man of many interests Ranjith Guruge passed away recently (December 4)  at the age of 68. Ranjith has been known to me for almost half a century. When I first met Ranjith, I was reading for my Law degree and he was a rookie undergraduate in [...]

Letters

Letters

Low-cost ‘humps’ best option  to avert rail accidents Yet another tragic accident at a railway crossing, this time in Wadduwa has brought into focus, the need for a quick, effective and low cost solution to this deadly problem. The presence of a speed –breaker no doubt would have prevented this accident where the warning given [...]

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