The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the tag “poverty”

Reflections on Sri Lanka

The last time I visited Sri Lanka was 15 years ago before the Tsunami and when the civil war was threatening to ruin tourism. Many things have changed. To start with the Tsunami although a devastating event did open up many lines of altruistic development in the country. People visited and learned what a beautiful people the Sri Lankans are, investment has flooded in and importantly time is a great healer. The end of the civil war also meant that less money and effort was being expended on weopons and death. So what did I find?

The first clear difference is that when arriving at the main airport near Colombo, Bandaranaike International Airport, there are no soldiers lining the avenues that form the entance and exit. The second difference is that there are now 2 international airports. A new one has been built down south at Hambantota.

Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) (also known as the Hambantota International Airport)  is an international airport serving the city of Hambantota in southeast Sri Lanka.Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport is Sri Lanka’s second international airport, after Bandaranaike International Airport. It serves as the secondary hubs for Sri Lankan Airlines and Mihin Lanka. It is named after the Rajapaksa family.  It is also the first greenfield airport in the country.

The next set of changes are that a number of motorways have been built, mainly two lane toll motorways. At the moment they seem a bit random but eventually they will join up and make tranportation far easier. The journey time already from Colombo airport to Galle has been reduced from 4.5 hours to around 2.5 hours.  The most noticeable change though relates to the people, they weigh more. There was no evidence of the thin malnourished poverty stricken people whom 15 years ago undertook the menial jobs for almost no wages. They have vanished. There were no requests from children for pens or clothes. The schools clearly have also improved in that computers are now present in some.

This is a country on the ascent, a happy country. The people in general are satisfied with their lot. Tourists are asked not to over tip something that can endanger the local economy. The population in 2012 was 20 million and increasing. The modernisation will continue and now may be the time to visit this beautiful country before westernisation takes over.




New Painting by British Artist Vincent Van B

A new painting entitled Poverty. 

Please do spread the word on this new and exciting young artist. He comes from a hairdressing background, where hairdressing and not painting exist.

Vincent Van B

Vincent Van B

Vincent Van B

Vincent Van B

Brentford Football Club Charity Song for Phillipines. Come on You Brentford

Football fans are not usually associated with melodic tunes nor inspirational lyrics. A group of Brentford fans associated with a local group, According To you, have got together to produce a single entitled ” Come on you Brentford”. This is neither a number one nor does it pretend to be. What it is , is a humble tune sold for a humble price 99p in iTunes. All proceeds going to the Phillipines disaster fund. The music collective “Soundhive” also should take a lot of credit. Korea Foods have paid all the production costs.

Perhaps if everyone who read this could share this information ( and my blog if they like), a few souls will indeed purchase this great little tune. I paid up my 99p this morning and the tune is driving my wife mad but quite liked by my children! A decent result.

Why my passion here? Well having been to the Phillipines a number of times and seen the poverty yet resilience of the folks there, they deserve to be helped. On my main photographic web site my front page is a photo taken of the seafront in Manila. This is no average seafront. This is a family living by rescuing empty bottles from the sea and what is eupemistically termed the beach.  These are real people. Do they types of folks deserve to lose the little that they have through a natural disaster? I do not think so. 99p. What else does that buy? Please do spread this story widely to the media in your area and country and buy the record. And by the way, Brentford are a great little football club in league 1 in England and would love to hear how you all are doing. The link to purchase is below, but iTunes is easy for most


The complete history behind this project can be found on this great website


Boat Family 2 small. jpg

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