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THE WORLD HERITAGE SITES OF SRI LANKA

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THE CENTRAL HIGHLANDS

By EVERYMAN

It was on July 31, 2010 that UNESCO inscribed The Central Highlands of Sri Lanka comprising Horton Plains, Knuckles Conservation Forest and the Peak Wilderness- Protected Area, as a World Heritage Site. In fact this site was one of the two which were classified by UNESCO as ‘Natural Sites’ the other being Sinharaja Forest Reserve(1988).

Horton Plains which is a Wonderland of Nature is undoubtedly the most popular of the three places described under the Central Highlands.

Under the shadows of Sri Lanka’s second and third highest mountains, Kirigalpoththa ( 7,854 feet ) and Thotupola ( 7,733 feet ) and at an elevation ranging from 6,900 feet to 7,500 feet lies this chilly, mist covered, 12.2 sq mile undulating plateau which was named in honor of a former colonial governor, Sir Robert Wilmot Horton (1831- 1837) A more descriptive name was given by our own people – Maha Eliya Thenna’ meaning the great open plains because here will be seen montane grasslands or high altitude grasslands and cloud forest which due to the abundant layers of mosses is also called a mossy forest.

Its awesome remoteness and varied biodiversity will make you forget the tumultuous world which you would have left behind before starting on this trip. It is a strange, silent, world that you have entered and prompts the writer to adapt a line from Gray’s Elegy, for here in the Plains you will be –

‘Far from the madding, crowd’s

ignoble strife, With only the sound of silence and

endemic life. Your plodding footsteps passing

gurgling streams And whistling winds like in your dreams’

Its high elevation, the sudden sharp showers, the incessantly blowing ice cold wind, makes it necessary that you wear woolen clothing and over this a leather jerkin with a hood /cap attached covering your ears would be the best. As you will realise it’s your ears that are most sensitive to the cold.

Of the alternate routes to the Plains the one from N’Eliya to Pattipola is the most enjoyable. Driving at a leisurely pace you can admire one of the most picturesque areas in Sri Lanka, like the sprawling Kande Eliya tank, vast meadows of shrubbery and montane forests with their characteristically conically shaped trees, the rich green pastureland of Ambewela farm and then on to Pattipola.

This little town has set a record of being the highest in the entire railway network in our island. From here to the entrance of Horton Plains will take you just a few minutes. The best time to start your exploration of the Plains is at least by 6.30 in the morning. As the sun begins to rise, a vast blanket of mist descends on the entire area, preventing you from enjoying the attractions which nature has to offer you. What is worse is that you may lose your way, walking aimlessly while stumbling over the slippery stones and precipitous pathways.

Here in the Plains are the headwaters of three main rivers which wind their way through the country and then pour out into the sea at different coastal towns. Mahaweli, which is Sri Lanka’s longest river (at Trincomalee ), Kelani ( at Colombo ) and Walawe ( at Ambalantota ) . The Plains also feed the Belihul Oya, Agra Oya, Kiriketi Oya, Uma Oya and Bogawantalawa Oya. Horton Plains it must be noted is one of the most important catchment areas in the island. Like a sponge it soaks up the water from the heavy rains which frequently fall and then from this high elevation, the water gradually seeps its way through the soil into streams, rivers and even into wells, located at lower elevations.

But it’s ‘World’s End’ which is the main attraction of Horton Plains. This is a sheer precipice. A drop of 4,000 feet, which is three quarters of a mile. As you stand at the edge of this steep massif which is in the Central Province and look right down below without getting a bout of acrophobia, you will be seeing the green foliage of trees of the Sabaragamuwa Province. Gazing a little farther you will see like tiny specks, the silvery, glinting, roof tops of plantation factories, hamlets and meadows.

And as you gaze still farther, you will be able to see 50 miles to the South, the hazy blue of the sky meet the shimmering blue of the sea. There are no protective railings at the edge of this escarpment, so forget about ‘selfies’ while standing here. In November 2018 a German tourist fell to her death while taking a selfie. It took the Sri Lanka Army, Sri Lanka Police and a group of volunteers, six hours to find her body which was in Non Pareil Estate located in the Sabaragamuwa Province. So the tragic and ironic fact is that she fell from one Province into another.

Passing on from this spectacular cliff there is another enchanting attraction. This is Baker’s Falls. Located on a tributary of the Belihul Oya it was formerly called ‘Gongala Falls.’ Here again the original Sinhala name was discarded and renamed in 1845 after Sir Samuel Baker who it has been claimed discovered it. Then, one may ask how was it that perhaps centuries before Sir Samuel Baker even stepped onto the shores of this island, our people knew about these falls and gave it its name? Also make note that this ‘eminent’ colonialist had the dubious distincti on of killing over 50 elephants right here on the Plains!

 

But never mind the name. It’s the sight that matters. It is 66 feet high and the icy cold water splashes in cascades at multiple levels before crashing into the 40 feet deep pool down below. Other than being the widest water falls in the country it is also claimed to be the most spectacular.

But that is certainly not all that the Plains has to offer. As you continue to plod your way, look around and observe the abundance of flora. Amongst the high altitude shrubland referred to as ‘pathana’ in Sinhala you cannot but fail to see the evergreen forests like coniferous and eucalyptus. The coniferous trees can be identified by the fact that they sprout long pointed green needles instead of leaves and cones instead of flowers. Amongst the tall trees there is Calophyllum walkeri called ‘ Kina’ in Sinhala. Its hard, durable, reddish, wood with dark streaks is used for making door frames, beams and rafters.

Another tall tree is Syzygium rotunifolium which grows to a height of over 30 feet and is commonly called ‘batapath damba.’ Amongst the smaller trees are evergreen bamboos (Indocalmus ) which grow up to about six feet. Cinnamon, Cinnamomum Zeylanicum are plentiful. Myrtaceae which belongs to the myrtle family is a shrub and one such is Syzgium aromaticum which produces cloves. Decorating the trunks of many of these trees are ferns, lichens and orchids. Sixteen of these orchids are endemic in Sri Lanka .

Here amongst the trunks of trees, you must peer closely and search for a species that looks like the tangled, unkempt beard of a lazy old man. This is Clematis Vitalba and its alternate name is ‘Old Man’s Beard’. Walking carefully by the water logged swamps and slow moving streams you will notice a variety of aquatic plants such as macrophytes which have large flowers with white petals and a yellow center. Search closely for another most interesting plant species which are the carnivorous bladderworts – Utricularia. They have a bladder– like trap which ensnares water fleas, nematodes ( tiny microscopic worms ), mosquito larvae and even tadpoles. Two renowned botanists, Peter Taylor Francis and Ernest Lloyd have stated that the vacuum driven bladders in these plants are the most sophisticated carnivorous trapping mechanisms to be found anywhere in the plant kingdom.

The fauna found here is much more fascinating. Do not be deceived by the silence for there is plenty of activity around, for you to listen and perchance to see. If you attune your ears you will be able to pick up the distant, muffled grunts and squeaks of monkeys such the as the Toque macaques, ‘Rilawa.’ In Sinhala, which has a whorl of hair on top of its head very much like a skull cap and the purple faced leaf monkey, called ‘kalu rilawa’ in Sinhala. You may even be able to hear the faint sawing of the Sri Lanka leopard which is endemic in Sri Lanka.

But if you are specially observant you might spot their faeces along the path on which you are walking. Take it as a warning that they are around. Similarly you would be able to see some freshly made patches on the ground. These have been made by wild boars when they dig the soil in search of worms and grubs. And if by chance you hear a barking noise that will be the Indian muntjacs, a species of deer which makes this peculiar noise when it is frightened specially when it sights a predator like the leopard.

Also living on the Plains is the Rusty Spotted Cat which is the smallest of the cat species, called in Sinhala ‘balal diviya.’ 

Then there is the Fishing Cat called the ‘kola diviya’ or ‘handun diviya’ in Sinhala which can not only swim but can even dive under water to catch fish. Looking up at the branches, it is hoped that you will be able to spot the Rhino Horned Lizard as it lies as if in deep meditation, with an occasional nodding of its head. It is a type of chameleon having a small white horn on its forehead, like the legendary Unicorn.

If you wish to see and indeed you must, a species listed as a global conservation priority and found only in Sri Lanka then

 endure the shivering cold of the night and be rewarded with the sight of the big eyed, shy, Red Slender Loris which sleeps

 by day and ever so stealthily gets active at night. Do not be concerned about snakes. There are only two types, both being non-venomous. One is the Rough Sided Snake called ‘dalawa medilla’ in Sinhala. It burrows into the earth and its cylindrical body shape facilitates this manoeuvre ever so easily. The other type of snake is the docile rat sna

 

ke, called in Sinhala ‘garendiya’.

However even if you fail to see any one of the species mentioned, it is most likely that you will see the her

ds of sambhur which roam about proudly displaying their large antlers which adorn their heads. They seem to be inv

 

iting you to video/ photograph them in all their majesty. So why disappoint them ?

 

 

Of bird life, it has been recorded that in Horton Plains there are 21 species, which can be found only in Sri Lanka and of these three can be found only in Horton Plains. For this reason Horton plains has been classified as an Important Bird Area ( IBA ). This classification was done by the BirdLife International which is an NGO having worldwide partnerships.

It is interesting to note that seven of these species have been honoured by being featured on postage stamps. They are the Dull Blue Flycatcher- ‘anduru nil masimara’, the Sri Lanka White Eye – ‘Lanka sithasiya, the Sri Lanka Wood Pigeon – ‘manil goya, the Sri Lanka Blue Magpie- ‘kehi bella.’ This species is quite different from the magpies you see in your home gardens. This one’s conspicuous colour is bright blue and as an added attraction has a reddish brown head. Then there is the Sri Lanka Spur Fowl – ‘haban kukula,’ the Yellow Fronted Barbet – ‘rath nalal kottoruwa’ the Orange Billed Babbler – ‘rathu demalichcha,’. But the most attractive of all the bird species found on the Plains is the Sri Lanka Jungle Fowl- ‘wali kukula’ A much deserved honour was bestowed on the Jungle Fowl when it was classified as the National Bird of Sri Lanka.

But these are not the only species of birds found in Horton Plains. There is a group of seasonal migratory birds which perform a two way marathon testing their endurance to the very maximum. Getting away from the bitterly cold winter countries of the Northern Hemisphere they arrive here to the pleasant climes of Sri Lanka in August/September and leave around May/ April. Here they find in abundance the food they require and more importantly the most suitable breeding places. It must be remembered that Sri Lanka is the farthest point away from South India with no land mass until the South Pole is reached.

Amongst these migratory birds are the Swiflets. This species make their nests entirely with saliva. Do not feel nauseated. Because these nests form the basis of that delicacy called ‘bird’s nest soup.’ Then there are the Alpine Swifts which spend as long as six months on the wing and remarkably, sleeps and – hold your breath, even mates while flying. The Mountain Hawk Eagle which is referred to as an opportunist predator, because it ambushes its prey of which it has a wide range from small birds to squirrels. Then there is the Black- Winged Kite. The male of the species has the habit of establishing ‘territories’ for themselves and defends such territories by fighting any intruder. After a noisy courtship the female obligingly enters the male’s territory. The writer wonders whether there can be a better example of female obedience!

Finally there is the Peregrine Falcon which is reckoned to be the fastest bird in the world with a speed of 240 mph as it swoops to grab it’s prey. These species are associated with falconry whereby such a bird is trained by a handler to catch and bring back small animals such as rabbits. It has been reported that Falconry (it was called a sport ) began in Mesopotamia around 2,000 BC. Fortunately, it never caught on in sports loving Sri Lanka and hopefully will never.

This being the Olympic Year or to be accurate the postponed Olympic Year, here is something to take note of. The world record for long distance flying is held by the Artic Tern which flies 12,430 miles from the Artic in the North Pole to the Antarctic in the South Pole and then back again doing another lap of 12,430 miles. Researchers have claimed that each year it sees more daylight hours than any other creature on the planet . And here is another world record for migratory birds, with a wingspan of 10 feet and a weight of 33 lbs, the Andean Condor is the largest flying bird in the world. Anyway neither of these record holders visit Horton Plains. So let’s hope that at least our athletes will break a record or two at the Tokyo Olympic Games if and when it is held.



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Amusement ride brought to life on big screen Jungle Cruise

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By Tharishi Hewavithanagamage

Directed by Jaume Collet-Serra from screenplay written by Glenn Ficarra, John Requa, and Michael Green, ‘Jungle Cruise’ is loosely based on Walt Disney’s theme park attraction of the same name. After success of the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ franchise, it comes as no surprise that Disney wanted to create another ride-based movie, this time featuring one of its first rides. The riverboat amusement ride was the only attraction to exist in the Adventureland themed section on Disneyland’s opening day in 1955. The live-action riverboat adventure stars Dwayne Johnson, Emily Blunt, Jack Whitehall, Jesse Plemons, and Paul Giamatti.

The film is set in 1916, and follows Dr. Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) in a fervent search for a mystical tree whose petals known as Tears of the Moon, are said to have healing properties. Her strong belief that she could bring about medical breakthroughs and save numerous lives, prompts her to embark on the adventure of a lifetime, deep into the Amazon rainforest.

With a map in hand, Lily along with her brother McGregor (Jack Whitehall) enlist the help of skipper and swindler Frank Wolff (Dwayne Johnson) to help navigate the vast waters of the rainforest. Coveting the mystical petals for their own goals are Prince Joachim (Jesse Plemons) and a team of 400-year old cursed conquistadors led by Aguirre (Edgar Ramírez). In a race against time, the bad guys and the jungle, Lily must place her trust in Frank if she is to ever reach the tree, but it’s easier said than done.

The latest Disney movie is definitely fun to watch. It’s a classic, and far too predictable, adventure, where a small group of protagonists venture into the unknown. The movie obviously borrows heavily from big screen hits like ‘Indiana Jones’, ‘The Mummy’ franchise, ‘Anacondas: Hunt for the Blood Orchid’ and even the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ franchise. This film is a patch-work of tropes.

The two-hour movie also packs a lot, which is precisely why the plot gets murkier as the audiences and protagonists cruise through. The big picture is brimming with smaller side stories which include characters that aren’t essential to the plot and in the end remain forgettable, like Paul Giamatti’s crusty harbormaster Nilo, who unfortunately falls into the margins of the movie. And scenes such as Prince Joachim talking to bees, makes the film utterly nonsensical. However, the strongest points of the movie are seen in the strengthening relationships and character development, which receive just about enough screen time to hold the story together. And while there is no overarching theme for this tale, it handles themes like women empowerment and exoticism.

‘Jungle Cruise’ offers audiences an imaginative look at deeper areas of the Amazon. The titular jungle, Frank’s beloved boat and adorable pet Jaguar Proxima are CGI highlights, whereas most other effects, notably the ragtag supernatural conquistadors, who look like they hung out with Davy Jones for too long, fall flat.

The film also delivers meticulously choreographed action sequences that showcase each individual character’s physical prowess. Everyone gets a chance to throw a punch with good form, not just The Rock. The film also draws in ideas and references from the actual ride. The humor, a courtesy of Frank’s pun-laden jokes is an actual reference to the theme-park attraction. The ride is known for its corny jokes, all delivered by skippers who narrate the adventure to visitors. Everything comes together to make the film a fun-filled experience. It falls short of a strong plot but is driven forward by the performance of the two leads.

An unlikely pair, both Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt showcase their stellar acting skills. Blunt brings a strong charisma as an intrepid scholar and adventurer, breaking barriers in ‘a man’s world’ through her role as Dr. Lily Houghton. Blunt expertly navigates the character’s inner nerd and heroine in doing amazing stunts and even takes on Johnson’s muscular self. Johnson pours his heart and soul into his character Frank. At first glance Frank comes across as a rogue character with no depth and mainly supplies humor to the tale, but as the story unfolds Johnson taps into deeper aspects of the character. The Blunt-Johnson pairing oddly makes their banter fun, but the sense of awkwardness can be overwhelmingly uncomfortable in some scenes.

Jack Whitehall’s role as Lily’s not-so-adventurous brother McGregor, is Disney’s latest attempt to introduce a gay character, but fails to leave a deep impression. It also seems like it’s never a good adventure without the nefarious Germans trying to kill everyone, but Jesse Plemons brings more comedic relief than menace to his role as Prince Joachim. The conquistador villain Aguirre played by Edgar Ramírez, remains sidelined and underused.

At the end of the day, ‘Jungle Cruise’ is a fun summer adventure that everyone can enjoy. Although the film doesn’t meet the standards set by their cooler counterpart ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’, ‘Jungle Cruise’ brings its own unique quirkiness that saves it from drowning completely.

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Astrologers suggested he be ordained

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Ven. Hikkaduwe Sri Sumangala Thera

Ven. Hikkaduwe Sri Sumangala Thera was an eminent scholar monk in the nineteenth century. He was the founder of the Vidyodaya Pirivena.

He was born in the village of Hettigoda in Hikkaduwa on 20-01-1827.

As was the Sinhala custom, his horoscope was cast by an eminent astrologer who predicted that the child was under the evil influence of the planets and that he will have a life of misfortune, with a suggestion that he be ordained. The parents then consulted several other eminent astrologers who too, made similar predictions.

(As later events proved, the predictions happened to be from those who had not properly mastered the science of astrology, or due to the inaccurate time of birth recorded).

As per the predictions, his parents then decided to ordain him. With that in view, he was given only a temple-oriented education, with no formal schooling.

When he was about 14 years old, preparations were made to ordain him at an auspicious time. But, as the auspicious time was fast approaching, he was found missing.

After he was found, he told his father not to ordain him and bring the Buddha Sasana into disrepute, as his astrological predictions were adverse.

However, he was ordained later as Hikkaduwe Sri Sumangala Thera, of his own volition.

Nobody ever thought, at the time, that he would one day be a scholar of great repute.

The following year, he sojourned at the Mapalagama Temple, in the Galle District during the Vas Season (rainy season) with his preceptor Mobotuwana Revatha Thera and several other monks.

This young Sumangala Samanera (novice) endeared himself to the devotees, with his disciplined demeanour and with his sermons, based on the Jathaka stories (stories of the former lives of the Buddha). One such devotee – John Cornelis Abeywardena, an English scholar (an ancestor of the present day Galle politician Vajira Abeywardena) volunteered to teach English to this young inspiring preacher.

It was a time when some bhikkhus were engaged in native medical treatment. And Sumangala Thera, then still a novice, was to answer this question as to whether the bhikkhus could engage in such a practice.

He construed that it was harmless to treat the hapless, destitute patients, friends or relations, provided it was not for any material gain and that it was not a serious violation of the Vinaya rules.

While travelling by train, one day, this Samanera met a group of pilgrims from Siam (now Thailand), coming down south, after a pilgrimage to Anuradhapura.

The pilgrims knew only their Siam language and the Pali language, resulting in they being cut off from the local populace.

One of them, half-heartedly spoke to this Samanera in the Pali lanugage. It was then that he realised that he was spaking to a Pali scholar. This resulted in exchange of views between the two of them.

Later he continued with his higher learning under several reputed venerable preceptors and also authored several valuable books.

During the Vas Season, in that year 1858, he sojourned at the Bogahawatta Temple, in Galle, and commenced publishing a newspaper for Buddhists named “Lanka Loka”.

He was a close friend of Col. Henry Steele Olcott, who arrived in Ceylon in the year 1880.

During those colonial days, the first class compartments in trains were more or less reserved for the white masters. Quite often, these compartments were seen going empty, except for one or two of them, while the second and third classes were crammed. Though some Sri Lankans had the means to travel first class, they didn’t have the courage to do so. There were others who did not care a damn for the white skins and unhestatingly travelled first class.

One day Sumangala Nayaka Thera was travelling to Kandy and entered a first class compartment, occupied by two high- spirited Englishmen.

With characteristic arrogance they subjected the Nayaka Thera to a barrage of vulger comments and rude insults.

“This old fellow has, by mistake, got into this compartment” one of them said.

“No, this is not a mistake. He is purposely, fraudulently, travelling first class with a third class ticket.”

“Shall we hand him over to the Railway Authorities?” asked the other.

The Thera gazed at them silently with a benign smile on his face.

At Polgahawela, the train was shunted into a siding, for the train carrying Sir Arthur Gordon, Governor of Ceylon, who was returning to Colombo, after a holiday, was due at any moment.

The train arrived and the Governor’s special compartment drew up right alongside the one occupied by the venerable monk. Glancing out of the window, the Governor saw Sumangala Thera and a smile of pure pleasure shone on the Governor’s face. For he and the learned monk were close friends. Scholars both, they visited each other quite often and spent many hours in erudite discussion.

“My dear High Priest! Fancy meeting you like this!” said Sir Gordon, opening the door of his compartment and walking into the one occupied by the Thera. They were engaged in a lively conversation, in English, and the train was 11 minutes late.

With the Governor’s departure, the two louts now crestfallen and repentant at their boorish behaviour, profusely apologised to the Thera.

With a smile on his face, the Thera, accepted their apologies with a brief exhortation. Thereafter they were engaged in a lovely conservation till the journey’s end.

Once there was a clash between some Buddhists who went in a procession and some Catholics at Maggona, resulting in the death of a Catholic.

As a sequel, a Buddhist named Seeman Fernando was sentenced to death. On representations made by the Nayaka Thera to the Governor, Seeman Fernando was released.

One day, a group of pilgrims that also included some members of the Cambodian Royal Family, went to Kandy with the Nayaka Thera for an exposition of the Tooth Relic.

It was a non-event as no prior intimation had been made to the Dalada Maligawa authorities in time.

The next morning, the Thera was walking leisurely along the Nuwara Wewa, when Governor Gordon, who was going in a horse drawn chariot saw the Nayaka Thera and after greeting him indulged in a lively conversation. When he told him about the non-event of the exposition of the tooth relic the previous day, the Governor took immediate steps for a special exposition, directing the Government Agent to make the necessary arrangements.

In the year 1873, he founded the Vidyodaya Pirivena – a seat of Buddhist higher learning. It was his greatest service to Buddhism.

When the permit to have a perahera was first introduced at the turn of this centry, the Nayaka Thera, as Head of Vidyodaya, sought permission to hold the annual perahera of the Pirivena. Permission was at first refused, but mysteriously granted a few days later.

Despite the refusal, the Nayaka Thera had gone ahead with the arrangements to hold the perahera, and when a senior police officer on horseback brought the permit personally to the High Priest, he contemptuously rejected it and sent the officer away.

This incident was reported to the I.G.P. who, in turn, reported it to the Governor of the colony of Ceylon.

The Governor, a close friend and admirer of Ven. Hikkaduwe Sri Sumangala Thera, sent his Maha Mudliyar, Sir Solomon Dias Bandaranaike, as his personal emissary, to respectfully request the learned scholar monk to come to Queen’s House to discuss the matter, as His Excellency feared that the act of the Nayaka Thera would be an undersirable precedent.

“I refused to accept the police permit for this reason,” the Nayaka Thera, told the Governor. “When I first asked for permission to hold the perahera, permission was refused. A few days later, permission was granted. This indicates that permits are given, not according to any law, but at the whims and fancies of police personnel, which is all wrong. That is why I refused the permit that was given on second thoughts. The freedom to practise the Buddhist religion and its rites have been guaranteed in the Kandyan Convention, and I shall be grateful if you and your minions will kindly remember that.”

The chastened Governor was profuse in his apologies to the outspoken scholar monk.

The Nayaka Thera was taken ill on the 21st April 1911 and passed away on the 29th (about 110 years ago).

Perhaps he would never have envisaged, that his much cherished Vidyodaya Pirivena would be no more on a tidal wave, in the years to come.

 

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Talented and versatile

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Shareefa Thahir is not only popular, as a radio personality, but she also has a big following on social media. Each time she uploads a new photo, or an event where she is in the spotlight, the ‘likes’ and ‘comments’ keep soaring. Shareefa does the scene at the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (Radio Sri Lanka – 97.4 and 97.6) as an English announcer, and news reader, and she is also a freelance TV presenter, and news anchor, on Rupavahini.

Had a chat with this talented, and versatile, young lady, and this is how it all went…

1. How would you describe yourself?

In just a few words, I would say a simple, easy-going person. And, my friends would certainly endorse that.

2. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I love myself, and I accept whatever laws I may have. So, obviously, there’s nothing that I would want to change in myself.

3. If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?

Absolutely nothing because they are amazing…just the way they are (and that hit by Bruno Mars ‘Just The way You Are’ came to mind when you asked me this question!)

4. School?

Melbourne International, and Gateway College. I was the captain of my house and participated in athletics – track events, etc.

5. Happiest moment?

Oh, I will never forget the day I won the Raigam Award for my work on television.

6. What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Accept yourself and enjoy the tiny things in life.

7. Are you religious?

I believe in God, but I don’t think you should go about announcing it. I stay true to my heart.

8. Are you superstitious?

A little …..stitious! Hahaha! Just kidding – not at all!

9. Your ideal guy?

Someone who accepts me for who I am, and who is supportive in my journey…like I would be in his.

10. Which living person do you most admire?

I would say Jennifer Lopez, for the simple reason that she is still very energetic, and active, for her age (52), keeps herself in good shape, and still has a huge fan base.

11. Which is your most treasured possession?

Yes, I would say my talent.

12. If you were marooned on a desert island, who would you like as your companion?

My best friend as I would certainly need someone to chat with! Hahaha!

13. Your most embarrassing moment?

Saying ‘good morning’ to viewers on an evening live show!

14. Done anything daring?

Not yet. I wonder when I would get that opportunity to do something…real daring, like, let’s say, climbing Mount Everest!

15. Your ideal vacation?

A life without social media, in Greece, enjoying the beauty of nature.

16. What kind of music are you into?

Oh, I can go on and on about this; it depends on my mood. I love alternate rock, mostly, but I enjoy reggae, and pop, too.

17. Favourite radio station?

SLBC’s Radio Sri Lanka.

18. Favourite TV station?

Channel Eye (for obvious reasons).

19 What would you like to be born as in your next life?

Myself…again.

20. Any major plans for the future?

I’m hoping to start a new venture. However, I’m keeping my fingers crossed, as right now the scene is pretty dicey, with this virus being so unpredictable.

 

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