Heart-warming comments and not coping with COPE | Sunday Observer

Heart-warming comments and not coping with COPE

Oh dearie, dearie me! How I stretch and relax and feel good! You will ask what’s with the Cat? Why isn’t she spitting venom this Sunday morning? It’s because she is relaxed. Did she have a caterwauling tumble the night before, rooftop or elsewhere? Sadly no! Then why, pray, the high spirits?

Because she knows there is good in this ole Island of hers - paradise to some, hell to others, but Sri Lanka to all. Everyone is not like attempting-to- be-suave Wimal Weera speaking so deliberately and venomously on whatever anybody other than himself and his so-called ‘Joint Opposition’ says and does.

Brats

All are not like an ex-tuition master who either pontificates on the economy of the country or dashes coconuts to bring disaster to the UNP side of the government. All are not like the brats of VIPs and even VVIPs who go surrounded by bodyguards - their fathers’ or borrowed – and, clash and thrash in nightclubs.

They may stay safe but they instigate or, at least do not attempt holding back, their trouble shooting security personnel. Other rich brats had a marvellous time, sometimes in underground playrooms.

So has this cat got the cream or for once caught a rat? No, is the reply. She is tickled pink, blue and white with the goodness of so many in the country. Yes, she means the Trail campaign that’s tripping all over our blessed Isle.

The latest ‘march’ by Trail is the Walk for Cancer 2016, which started off from Point Pedro on 6 October and ends on 2 November in Devundara.

The aim is to build a cancer care and research centre attached to the Karapitiya Hospital in Galle.

Expensive

Will a mere walk collect enough money for such an expensive undertaking? You bet it will. Past experience proves it.

In 2011 the Walk for Cancer advertised by Mahela Jayawardena and Kumar Sangakkara collected more than 2 million US dollars. Thus was built a fully equipped, manned by specialists, Cancer Hospital in Tellipalai, Jaffna, declared open by the President in 2014. This time’s walk is to collect USD 5 million to have an oncology hospital in Galle.

Up until 2014 there was only the Maharagama Cancer hospital, with of course oncology wards and specialists in the larger hospitals. But a hospital for cancer patients will be such a boon to the entire south of the country.

Who are the super souls who started this project for goodness sake, wondered this feline until she googled and talked with people.

Two young persons are the progenitors of this wonderful project: Sarinda Unamboowe and Nathan Sivanananathan, friends and colleagues. Sarinda had vowed to walk the length of the Island once it was rid of the LTTE and peace restored, in thanks and praise of peace. Nathan had suffered a personal tragedy - death of a loved one through cancer.

Reclining

Hence their herculean task to organize a walk of 670 km covering 28 days. Well, the second such walk is on, as this cat writes. Unfortunately she has been reclining on her sofa except for a visit to the Green, but emailing and cellphoning two women walking: one on the northern stretch, the other going south, both doing the 25 km middle stretch – Colombo to Moratuwa.

She’s also been fed with info from overseas by a keen walker in spirit. And how is the money forthcoming? Walker-sponsored, pledged, donated, sent from overseas and slipped into tills the walkers carry.

This last is the most touching and what melted the usually rock-hard feline heart was that little children donated generously, so also beggars on the road. The differently-abled joined the walk and also kids and oldies. The indigenous people showed their oneness by gathering at Kurunegala to meet and walk in the Trail.

Now that is the sort of thing that we need in Sri Lanka. TV I and Sirasa of the Maharaja Organization have also been doing much recently in their 100 days’ program of supplying drinking water, repairing roads, constructing electric fences and bridges. But the idea of the Trail germinated in the minds of two young men and it has become a stupendous undertaking, mostly with dedicated individuals participating.

This time’s Trail too had Mahela J and Kumar S with younger politicians of the likes of Eran Wickremaratne and Harsha de Silva spotted on Galle Face Green.

It has brought people of all walks of life together and that shows we Sri Lankans can work and live amicably together. There can be peace and mutual trust among the races and religions. So there is hope for the country, in spite of the recent tragedy of the death of two Jaffna University students.

Cheer

No less than 13,000+ people turned up at Galle Face Green to cheer the second leg of the Trail on Wednesday 26. Many of them joined the walk at 7.00 a m after yoga and exercise. They walked to Moratuwa at which point the walk ended for the day.

Usually 25 km or so is covered per day, with rests every 5 km when refreshments are served and the organizers make bottles of water, jeevani and glucose available.

In contrast is the bond scam. The news emanating from the COPE process is not only confusing and confounding, it amuses, too. There seems to have been bullying, too!! Our politicians seem to find it so difficult to achieve consensus. Ah, well! That is not our business this morning.

Time is much better spent following the Trail as so many thousands of enthusiastic people march each day from early morning to mid morning to reach Devundara or ‘Dondra Head’ as the Brits used to call it, on 2nd November to help people suffering from dreaded cancer. 

 

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