By Aadesh Wickrematunge
One day about two years ago, I was at home here in Melbourne playing with my stuff when I heard a commotion. My mother was crying and people were coming to the house. My mother said my dad had been hurt so we got ready immediately to leave to Sri Lanka.
At the airport I was playing about at the transit lounge. I asked Ammi whether Thaththi was in hospital. “He will ask me for 100 kisses I know,” I said happily. Then Ammi told me the truth. I couldn’t believe it. I said, “No, it can’t be,” and I cried.
When we came to Colombo, it was the worst day of my life. Seeing my father who loved me so much and I loved so much, dead, was the saddest thing ever.
My father loved us with his whole life. Each time he came to Australia, the first few days we would always go shopping. That was after we played the ‘100 kisses’ game. He would ask me “are you Ammi’s Putha or Thaththi’s Putha?” and I would say “Thaththi’s” but if ever I said “Ammi’s Putha,” I would get tickled unmercifully.
He was such fun, always joking, teasing us and buying us lots and lots of things. The last trip we did together was to the Gold Coast in Queensland and we had so much fun going on all the rides. Thaththi would scream like a girl! It was so funny. But Thaththi was very sensitive too. Whenever he left, he would hug all of us and cry.
I am going to high school, Year 7, this year and he won’t be able to see me. I miss him so, so much. I would like to be a journalist like him and re-live his philosophy of “Unbowed And Unafraid.”