Archive | August 2014

“The Bridge Over The River Kwai” In The 1950s Oscar Winning Movie (Film) Is Being Rebuilt In Kitulgala, Sri Lanka.

Indiana_Jones_and_the_Temple_of_Doom_PosterB

Filmed in Sri Lanka though supposed to be set in India.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.
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by
Anura Guruge


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“The Sessions”
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Disney ‘Planes: Fire & Rescue’
>> ‘Hyde Park On Hudson’
>> “Frozen” 
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>> Junaid Khan concussion
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‘Guard of Honor’ for Mahela Jayawardene

>> Angelo Matthews Thanks God for Test Victory

++++ Search ‘movie’ & ‘Disney’  for other related posts using the sidebar options >>>>>>

++++ Search ‘Sri Lanka’, ‘cricket’, ‘prayer’ & ‘Buddhism’  for MANY other related posts >>>>


On Friday night, at the scintillating “North Shore Acappella” concert, one of the other volunteers, always up on world news, whispered in my year, over the signing, something about The Bridge Over The River Kwai. I couldn’t hear all of what he had to say because we were standing quite close to the stage and the group was in full swing. I didn’t get to see him afterwards. But, I made a mental note to Google ‘News’ to see what had transpired BECAUSE I have been multiple times to BOTH locations — the movie set remains in Kitulgala, Sri Lanka (née Ceylon) and the ‘modern’ metal bridge, downstream where the real one used to be, near Kanchanaburi, Thailand.

All Sri Lankans of my vintage have a vested interest in “The Bridge Over The River Kwai“. It was one of two iconic movies shot in Sri Lanka, the other having been “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom“. The ‘Indiana Jones” movies is set in India and was supposed to be shot in India. But they ran into ‘issues’ and moved the filming to Kandy, Sri Lanka. All the brown folks masquerading as Indians are Sri Lankans and Spielberg, to save money, didn’t even bother to make them learn ‘Indian‘ (e.g., Hindi or Urdu). Instead they speak Sinhalese. For those of us who understand Sinhalese it is hilarious.

Anyway, the “The Bridge” is a legend though the whole thing is ‘factional’ — loosely based on real events, but it is NOT 100%. Plus, there never was a river named ‘Kawi’!


kwaifactsppt

Click to ENLARGE. I made this up — quickly.

dailymailbridgekwai1a

The story is in “today’s” U.K. ‘Daily Mail’. Click to access. As ever great coverage with LOTS of detail and pictures. Must read.

bridgeoverrivrekwaimap

From Google Maps with my annotations. NOT even close. Sri Lanka, i.e., Ceylon, was nowhere even CLOSE to the Burma railway. So this was all poetic license. Plus in 1957 Ceylon was still, just 9 years after Independence, still quite “British”. Click to ENLARGE. Go to Google Maps for original.

kitugalaerath1a

from Google Earth. The Kelani River at Kithulgala — 5 minutes walk from the Rest House. The rocks and some concrete is all that is there. The concrete is from the movie. The rocks predate the movie. In my days in Ceylon, i.e., pre-1968, you would find Sinhalese women washing clothes on the rocks and people bathing in the river. ‘Kitulgala’ = ‘Kithul’ is a type of palm tree from which we get many uses while ‘gala’ means ROCK which is appropriate given the rocks intruding into the river in this area.


When I lived in Ceylon, i.e., before August 27, 1967, I used to go to the Kithulgala Rest House, as with all of the other, British-legacy, 30 or 40 Rest Houses in Ceylon, on a fairly regular basis. At least twice a year. I don’t recall ever spending the night there. We would typically stop there for lunch on the way to delightful Nuwara Eliya (the climatically COOL hill capitol of those days) or Hatton (prime tea estate country). I would order my de rigeur Rest House meal, Fish & Chips (British style) with tomato sauce (if they had it), and then head down to the river.

I spent the summers of 1973 & 1974 in Bangkok, Thailand while I was finishing my first degree at SwanseaKanchanaburi, those days, was a nice 90 minute drive from Bangkok. I remember going there at least twice, but it might have been more. There is a relatively famous Buddhist temple complex close by. I walked across the metal bridge each time. I had a picture of the metal plaque that is there commemorating the real bridge.

So I just want to document this because I feel an attachment to both places.


Sucking_leech

A leech.

Wow. The exterior, and by that I mean the main yellow building, hasn’t changed much. There used to be a dining room that KIND of overlooked the river over the vegetation. You couldn’t see the ‘remains’ of the bridge from the Rest House. You had to walk down, always checking your crotch for leeches! Leeches were a big problem in areas such as that and they made a beeline to your crotch. That is where they could do most damage. So if you were a local that is where you started checking. On the leg was piece of cake.

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The modern Rest House at Kitulgala. Considerably modernized and restored from the one that I used to visit in 1960s and 1950s. Click to ENLARGE.


Dover, N.H., Greek Fest 2014 At The ‘Hellenic Center’ — Saturday, August 30, 2104.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related Posts:
>> Dover Greek 2014 Preview —
>> Aug. 22, 2014.
>> Dover Greek Festival 2013 —
>> Sep. 1, 2013.
>> Dover Greek Festival —
>> Aug. 22, 2013.

>> Teischan’s 2nd recital Dover …
>>June 16, 2013.


Click to ENLARGE.


This year we didn’t get there till, nearly 8:30 pm. As soon as we got there the priest (Proistamenos) of the (beautiful) Dover ‘Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church’approached me, as he had also done last year, and thanked me for my post for this year’s (‘lovely’) post. That was nice. He is a very nice person. I like him. We also got to see Siroun Braun, Teischan’s ex-piano teacher — and Teischan got to help her with the raffle. That was nice. Teischan enjoyed that.

They were out of lamb. That is OK. The live music was good. I got to take some pictures of a  bouzouki which I always enjoy photographing and listening to as well. I guess I took too many pictures! They did not like it. Well, I kind of got the veiled message too. They don’t want my type at their function taking pictures. No problem. I won’t be taking any pictures next year because I will NOT be going. Simple as that. But, here are some of the pictures that I did take.


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Click to access image gallery.



“North Shore Acappella”, August 29, At The ‘Inn On Main’, Wolfeboro, N.H. For “Great Waters” Was Just Scintillating.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.northshoreaca2ndflash1a
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Anura Guruge


Click for tickets.

Click for tickets.

Related posts:
>>
‘North Shore Acappella’ – Setup
>>
North Shore Acappella

>> 2104 Cruise: The People
>> 2014 Volunteer Cruise

>> ‘1964 The Tribute’
>> ‘1964 The Tribute’ Setup
>> Setup for ‘Festival Chorus’
>> Gordon Lightfoot Concert

++++ Search on ‘Great Waters’ for many other related posts >>>>

++++ Search on ‘Wolfeboro‘ for many other related posts >>>>


Click to ENLARGE.


What a concert?

We had heard, repeatedly, that “North Shore Acappella“, who had played for “Great Waters” last Summer too, was good. That it was also sold out days ahead was another data. But, they exceeded all of my expectations. They were just scintillating. The 290 or so lucky folks who were packed into the ambience-galore function room at the “Inn On Main”  were in for a treat and they knew it and they loved it. What a way to end what had been a GREAT season for “Great Waters Music Festival“. Delightful Wolfeboro, N.H., the oldest summer resort in the U.S., is indeed blessed.

North Shore Acappella” is a class act. Amazingly rich, resonant voices with magical tibre. They were astounding. They have been doing this for a long time, 30 years, and they have perfected their craft — though they love to make self deprecating jokes about their age and the toll on their vocal chords. Acappella until last night was not high on my list of musical genres that I will “walk a mile to listen”. They gentlemen, and that they are indeed, made a convert out of me.

Nicest folks possible. What personality. What charm. Genuinely nice guys. Yes, we got to interact with them, quite a bit, before, during and after the show. Very, very nice people and their stage presence and repartee is so synergistically awesome. Messrs. Tommy Duarte,  Vinny Straccia, Paul Lopes, Guy Chiapponi & Jimmy Martin PLEASE take another bow. Seeing you perform and interacting with you was an honor and a pleasure. The world needs more people like you. We are going to plug “North Shore Acappella” whenever and wherever we can and I think there is already talk of having them back next year. Actually I just saw an e-mail suggesting that the public demand has been such that we might be bringing them back every year! Wow. That alone tells much. That they played back-to-back last year and this year is pretty amazing in its own right  given that “Great Waters” tries not to repeat acts ‘close together’ unless they see an overwhelming public demand.

Well as the pictures above and below will clearly show all three of the Guruge ladies were on the stage — Deanna multiple times. Them getting Devanee on the stage was, of course, the result of us being rather active volunteers and the fact that Devanee, on scholarship, sang for the “Great Waters Festival Chorus” in July. Various people told the group that they should get Devanee up on stage. By the time we arrived and we started talking to them in the car park they already knew that there was ‘this girl’ that was going to get called up to sing. It was good. Devanee wasn’t thrilled and it wasn’t her greatest performance but as those that championed her cause all pointed out it was a ‘first step’ and ‘good experience’. Thanks ALL.

Deanna along with Heidi and another lady who we do not know volunteered to sing on their second, by huge demand, encore — which by popular demand was to be “Going to the Chapel”. It was a fun way to wrap up the evening and the season.

Thank YOU, “North Shore Acappella”. You folks are just GREAT.


5 Separate Galleries of Picture.
Click to access each gallery individually.


The “North Shore Acappella” Singers

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The “North Shore Acappella” The Concert

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The “North Shore Acappella” with Devanne, Teischan & Deanna

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The “North Shore Acappella” with Deanna

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The “North Shore Acappella” — Local Color
GWNSAPcolormontage1


Elect Raymond Howard Jr. For State Representative N.H. Belknap District 8: Alton, Barnstead & Gilmanton.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by Anura Guruge




I spoke with Raymond, on the telephone, Thursday morning. We hadn’t spoken in quite awhile. It was good to chat. Ray is busy with the upcoming Primary on September 9. We, of course, want him to win that and the General Election in November. The second hurdle should not be an issue.

Ray realizes that he doesn’t have much Web presence, but also, correctly, points out that the constituents that he is going after are not folks that typically get influenced by what they read or find on the Internet. He is right on that. But, I have offered to help Ray with any Web visibility he would like to achieve.

I keep on seeing his signs on Route 28 and drive by the LARGE handwritten one he has on Stockbridge Corner, on Route 28 — close to where he hangs out.

On Friday afternoon, given that I had my new camera with me, I stopped, twice, on Route 28 on the way back from Wolfeboro, N.H., from the “North Shore Acappella” set up, for “Great Waters”, to take the above pictures. Plus I wanted to try out the camera. These two pictures have been drastically reduced in size, using Picasa. The originals, at 3.63MB and 3456×2304 pixels, are rather big.

Well, my chat with Ray confirmed what I already knew. Ray is a good guy — and that means something. You can trust him. He will be good for us in Alton. We definitely look forward to having Ray in Concord.

Vote for Ray.


“North Shore Acappella”, August 29, At The ‘Inn On Main’, Wolfeboro, N.H. — The Setup.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.
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by
Anura Guruge


Click for tickets.

Click for tickets.

Related posts:
>>
‘North Shore Acappella’

>> 2104 Cruise: The People
>> 2014 Volunteer Cruise

>> ‘1964 The Tribute’
>> ‘1964 The Tribute’ Setup
>> Setup for ‘Festival Chorus’
>> Gordon Lightfoot Concert

++++ Search on ‘Great Waters’ for many other related posts >>>>

++++ Search on ‘Wolfeboro‘ for many other related posts >>>>


August2914setupGW1a

Click to access ENLARGE individual images.


Yep, we — Teischan, Devanee & I — were at “Inn on Main” in lovely (and packed) Wolfeboro, N.H., just before 1pm today for the setup.

We needed 250 chairs — arranged. We had to haul, I think, at least 120 from the basement and loft. Well we knew the drill. We had done it earlier in the month for Lori McKenna. We set up the ‘chain gangs’, with the kids at the end, and we had all those ‘suckers’ moved in no time. It was fun. Great camaraderie. I, as is my wont, had brought a cooler with ‘refreshments’. It is thirsty work. A good time was had by all.

Sold out concert.

But, of course, we can go if we want to. Crazy busy — like triple ‘booked’.

Last concert. Wow. I am kind of sad though we may have some ‘intimate’ folk concerts during the winter. That would be good — when there is snow on the ground.

Thank YOU, Great Waters.


The Passing Of Dr. James (Jim) R. Eakin, Laconia & Meredith, N.H. THE BEST Eye Doctor In Central New Hampshire.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013...
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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
0. Dr. Jim Eakin retirement …
June 18, 2014.
1. Dr. James (Jim) Eakin, THE BEST … —  Sep. 26, 2013.


Click to ENLARGE. ‘Laconia Daily Sun’ obituary from Friday, August 29, 2014. Use link below to access original.

Link to access original obituary …


I just saw the obituary.

I was devastated.

Of course we knew he was ill and had cancer.
Yes, we knew it was ‘aggressive’.
We never thought it would be this quick.

We feel a tremendous loss.

He was my eye doctor since 2001 when I met him at Laconia Rotary.

He was Deanna’s eye doctor since we got married in 2003.

He is the ONLY eye doctor the two kids have known.
He was SO GOOD to them.
Many years ago Devanee got a minor paper cut in her eye at school
— in Gilford.

The school wanted us to take her to an optometrist.
It was like 2pm in the afternoon.
Jim saw her immediately.
It was late, past 5pm. But he spent so much time.
And I think he REFUSED to bill us!

That was Jim.

Jim was very good to us.

He liked my pope books.

We would always chat.

As I said, exactly a year ago, I consider him THE BEST
optometrist in central New Hampshire,
and as that post explains I am no stranger to
good eye doctors having had ones in London’s famed Harley Street
and Boston’s Boylston Street.
I also have had eye doctors in Nashua, Manchester and Concord.

Dr. James Eakin was good,
a very, very good man.

He was quite the man.

He did so much good.

True, salt of the Earth.

Jim will be truly missed — but remembered and commemorated with affection and respect.

Thank YOU, Jim.

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