A choir of girls was scheduled to sing carols in the foyer of a new five-star hotel here in Kandy. As some of the girls attended the school where my wife Brenda has worked, we went along.
I expected to see a crush of proud parents but there were none.
This choir was of girls from an orphanage. Some of them had survived the Tsunami of Boxing day 2004, others had been rejected by their families or were orphans for other reasons.
The orphanage is not talked about much because there has been a fear that a politician may find out about it and insist that its charitable funds be administered by the government. With the previous government we know what that would have meant. The present government is combating the worst of the corruption of the previous one.
The orphanage has had its problems. It was run for a while by a very acquisitive matron but that has changed for the good. It is reasonably well funded mainly from Norway.
The girls sang well, ably supported by two guitars and keyboard. One carol they sing here is repeated 3 times, in English, Sinhala and Tamil; the three official languages of the country.
People gathered around, all thinking of Christmas. I was thinking of Christmas too but of where these girls would spend the holiday. They would spend it in the orphanage, of course. They have nowhere else to go, no families, no friends except one another.
Afterwards we wished them a Merry Christmas but we had a pricking feeling behind our eyes.
The orphanage is a remarkable place. I will write more about it in a later post.
Post Series: Dispatches from Sri Lanka, by Mike Sedgwick:
- An Unusual Carol Concert in Sri Lanka
- Christmas in Sri Lanka: 9 Things in England I’ll Miss This Christmas
- Agricultural Restaurant in Sri Lanka
- Back to Sri Lanka
- Bats and Hallowe’en
- Dispatches From Sri Lanka
- Kandy Lake vs Chandler’s Ford Lakes
- Self-Employment In Sri Lanka
- Sri Lankan Wedding
- Sri Lankan Food
- There’s Some Corner Of A Foreign Field
- The Cultural Triangle of Sri Lanka
- This Is the Record Of John
- Tuk-tuk: My Transport Of Delight
- Life On The Road
- Commonwealth Games In Kandy
- A Temple For A Tooth?
- Dawn Train Down The Mountain To Colombo
- Traditional And Modern Medicine in Sri Lanka
- Ancient Vedda Tribe Becoming Extinct
Never miss out on another blog post. Subscribe here:
Subscribe to Blog via Email