Tsunami Portrait

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Tsunami Portrait - Sri Lanka, 2005. I went to Sri Lanka in March of 2005 with a virtual stranger named Swarna Pereira, who quickly became a beloved friend. Swarna was a native of Sri Lanka, and an employee of the UN in New York, and she took it upon herself to rent a container and fill it with donations from the States (and a few personal items) and personally ship it back home. We traveled all over the country, visiting her friends and family who had suffered the brunt of the storm and were attempting to rebuild. This beautiful young lady was the daughter of one of SwarnaÂ’s friends who lived in the south of the island near Galle. Their family lost everything, and while they managed to rebuild their home, it was devoid of all belongings save a few folding chairs and a makeshift table, but it was a party when Swarna arrived, bearing food and drink, clothes and even a few toys for the kids. It was an honor to be a part of her personal journey and to call her my Lokkuamma (beloved auntie).