Saturday, October 6, 2012

Road Trip 2012 Day Four- Two Cultures in One Day

It’s amazing how each district we visit has their own form of welcome, each so different in nature and yet equally sincere. In Monaragala, we are greeted by a group of beautiful little children, dressed in their traditional Sinhalese costumes, carrying beetle leaves which they hand to us before worshiping us in a traditional Sri Lankan gesture.

The Monaragala students have us blown away with the elaborate program they have planned for us. Whether it's singing, dancing or oratory skills, they've certainly got it all. The amount of talent that these students have remind us of the powerful potential each of them have to become the future leaders of this country, and we are constantly affirmed of our very purpose here today, in guiding them towards that goal.

Right after the Monaragala workshop, we drive further North along the coast line to reach Akkaraipattu. It takes us only a matter of a few hours to get there, and yet, the difference in culture we see between the two places is certainly shocking. Akkaraipattu is a completely Tamil Muslim community, and when comparing it to the Sinhalese Buddhist region of Monaragala, we realise that we have arrived into a completely different environment to where we conducted a workshop just a few hours ago. From the language spoken, to the way the students are dressed, the differences are so extreme, it's almost hard to believe both these communities are a part of the same country. But this disbelief does not last for long for, as we conduct pour first ever Tamil workshop, we realize that where ever these students might come from the talents they posses and the passion they exhibit remains equally inspiring. They are the reason for our journey and we are grateful to them for giving us the confidence we need to know that we are in deed making a difference.

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