The Christmas tree, having overstayed its welcome, was taken down last night. Various friends and relatives have been visiting, which has been nice. The Asia Earthquake on the news is alternatively annoying, upsetting, boring and exciting. I've hated watching the total of dead people rise and rise (it's a bit like watching Blue Peter when they have one of their charity drives - how much money have we made this week? Let's look at the chart.... oh, it's going up.... £100,000. Well done everyone!") I'm also kind of annoyed that the number of dead British people is made such a fuss about, when it's barely in double figures, whereas there are hundreds of thousands of mortalities.
I've been to Sri Lanka in the past, it's one of those countries where it's very easy for wealthy westerners to have guilty luxury holidays as things are so cheap. I do remember travelling along the costal roads on the way from one resort to another and seeing mile after mile of shanty towns, although what struck me was how smilely the people were (and how many of them had brilliant white teeth - I guess that's what a lack of access to western junk food will give you). One thing I'm pretty certain of though, not many of those little makeshift houses are likely to still exist after this week. Rotten luck for communities that weren't particularly lucky in the first place.