Friday, December 31, 2004

JCI Launches "Operation Hope" to Help Tsunami Victims

"JCI Members from all over the world have expressed their desire to help tsunami victims in Asia.
Several have also requested that JCI networks be used to effectively help communities that can be reached by local JCI Members.

Therefore, with the approval and backing of 2005 JCI President Kevin Cullinane, JCI Secretary General Edson A. Kodama is organizing a large-scale project, which will be launched January 1, 2005.

The objective of this project, entitled "JCI Operation Hope," is to offer assistance, comfort and hope to the victims in the most direct and efficient way possible: through our JCI Members. Read more...(JCI)

Happy New Year 2005

The great thing of living Down Under and Middle-Earth is that you get to celebrate New Year earlier then everybody else.

Have a kick ass 2005, crazy nomads!

Have fun tonight, kiss somebody and take a break from a gloom and doom of the moment. There are plenty of time and opportunity for good works tomorrow.

Tsunami misc. notes

Wikipedia does an excelent job in maintaining records about the Indian Ocean Tsunami.

CNN reports that the toll has risen to 135,000 victims.

According to Reuters, NYE celebrations around the world rolls in a muted tone.

Saki has updated her first hand experience in Phuket, Thailand.

Brian send me a link to a collection of satelite pictures on the Tsunami affected areas (horrifying).

The Jakarta Post reports on Indonesia's NYE
"Many of the planned New Year's celebrations will become charity events in the wake of Sunday's 9.0-magnitude earthquake and deadly tidal waves in Aceh and other nations on Indian Ocean that killed at least 80,000 in Aceh alone as of Thursday night." chronicle first hand account in Phuket, Thailand. Check out Jeff Jarvis excellent collections of links.

NYTimes' in depth coverage titled "How Scientists and Victims Watched Helplessly"

On a personal note, I will continue covering the aftermath of the Indian Ocean Earthquake next year, but more in a less-frequent one post summary format as the rescue-reconstruction effort in the region goes on. I'm currently involved in translating Indonesian field reports from Aceh to be distributed in foreign aid agencies so expect more granular, specific and hands on the posting (at least on Indonesia).

Thank you for the wonderful support. This has been a hellish week but the outpouring generousity has affirmed my faith in humanity and in our willingness to take care of each other.

Please join Bea's call of action.

Lastly, we have a "no gatekeeper" consensus here at nomadlife. So if you have something you really care about that you think people should know, email me ( for the posting rights to this main blog.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Call To Action : AIESEC's Grand Gesture

Hi Friends,

We are witnessing a human tragedy in unimaginable scale in South East Asia.

Are we going to stay being witness or are we going to do something about it?
Are we going to just sympathize and talk about it in a pub about how awful the tragedy was?

I know each of us can do better than that.

Action speaks louder that words. Let's make AIESEC real loud.

We make passion into action, we make things happen.

So I am calling all of you into action, either together in a group or individually to raise funds for the massive rescue operation underway right now. Talk to your friends, families, lovers, neighbours, and ask them for support.

Donate to the charities of your choice, no matter the amount

Donate those money you were going to use to buy 3 or 4 beers during New Year's Eve celebration and have those money contributed towards buying medicine, food and shelter for those in need right now.

Do it how you like it.. but do it.

Activate your leadership, demonstrate your integrity, live your diversity, enjoy participating, act sustainably… you know what I am talking about…

Let make this be AIESEC's Grand Gesture toward humanity.

Thank You.

Beatriz Guillen
Alumni of AIESEC
MCP 01/02
Aiesec in El Salvador


Responses received from email:

Thanks for this reminder. I'd planned to donate and it had slipped my
mind a few days until this arrived. I'll pass on word to my friends to
encourage their support as well. Thanks again for your efforts to make
an impact from afar.


Dear Beatriz,
Nice calling! Thanks for your effort. Very much appreciated. :-)Just also let you know that I'm safe and fine in Singapore. And also trying to get to know if the friends in the neighborhood countries are safe as well. Any update will let you guys know.

Hey Beatriz!!

I am really glad to notice your compassion in this email. I hope it
spreads out throughout all AIESEC'ers and that we can really make a

Here in Portugal everything is just fine.. However, people are very sad
and touched by current events in SE Asia. And many organizations have
already flewn into Sri Lanka and India to help out with victims.
I am also part of one of those organizations and they have done their best
to gather equipment and doctors that would be willing to fly to the
affected areas. We have until now managed to collect around 250.000 euros.
Hope everything is ok with you!
We havent talked for a long time now...

Ana Elisa


Hi Friends,
To follow up the call of Beatrice, hereby some information that you can use to help the victims of tsunami and earthquake especially for those victims in Srilanka.
The email below is an initiative that come from member of AIESEC in Srilanka that open a website where you can check the link and donate some money there.
Best wishes,
Dian Irawati MCP 01-02 AIESEC in Indonesia
My name is Isuru Wijeyaratne, an AIESECer from Sri Lanka.

"...Sri Lanka is a poor country.

It'll take some more years to rebuild all what we have lost. I'm making a plea on behalf of my countrymen to donate some amount to these affected people all around the world in the very spirit of AIESEC.
We have created a website, where you can deposit money on behalf of these unfortunate people.
When you get to the site click on the link "HELP THE VICTIMS OF THE TSUNAMI"..."


Mira, vos estás recaudando fondos o algo? Porque a mi me encajaría ayudar, pero no se adonde ni como. Si sabés donde se puede ir a dejar, la ayuda, please avisame-
Ana Lucía Jiménez A.


good afternoon beatriz!

thanks for the call for action
many of us in singapore are doing our fair butas some of us have families who have been directly affectedand we are one big family in aiesec here: trainees, locals, alumni ...
keep up the work on your side!

jovinin singapore

HeyI completely agree with what u have said.

We, as the "making-leaders" organisation, should try to be the example inthis kind of situations. I would like that AIESEC in ARgentina could actlike real aiesecers with both the problem in South Asia and the recenttragedy that arised in my country.
I'm sure u have already listened aboutthe fire un Buenos Aires.

We, alumni's and ex members of aiesec, should try to strive our own livesand other lives to make the real difference, and not only sell exchange and earn money.

Me despido con un fuerte abrazo desde Argentina, y con los mejores deseospara que este 2005 que acaba de comenzar, tenga la paz y el amor que todosaspiramos

Muchos saludos
Ex miembro de AIESEC Extensión Morón

Dear SSGN !

We are ending the year, and preparing to receive the New one wishing the best success for AIESEC as an organization and to each of us to become better human being.

Even though, our people in the other side of the world is suffering because a human tragedy in South East Asia hapenned some days ago.

Are we going to stay being witness or are we going to do something about it? ?"

AIESEC in Sri Lanka has opened an account together with the University of Sri Lanka in order to be able to receive donations to support those people who are in need because of this tragedy.

AcctNo: 0830 697042 001

You can also make it online in the following link:

and go to "Help the victims of the Tsunami" or directly to:

Any amount you can provide will contribute towards buying medicine, food and shelter to help members who were affected by the tsunami.

Now, more than always, we as a worldwide network should combine our efforts in any way possible!

Dear Beatriz,

Thank you so much for your letter and powerful initiative!
Living and working here in Asia now, on international MC in Singapore, it
has been crazy to see all of this happening so close - although even still
never being able to imagine what is happening to those in the places of

Just wanted to let you know that I am really seeing donations being gathered
in great speed all across AP, both outside and inside of AIESEC, and I can
really feel the compassion and the togetherness of the region. I hope this
will give the people affected the courage, strength and reason to look into
the future.

Lots of love and best greetings to you for the new year! Got to focus


Nice email Beatriz, I will definitely find some beer money for some of the
charities here :o)


The Prez says.....

Posted to AIESEC Global Members list by the President of AIESEC International today:

Dear AIESECers all over the world

As the world prepares for a new year 2005, one part our world is facing death and destruction like never before. The pictures and videos of the devastating Tsunami, originating in South Asia, are all over the television and newspapers. Even as you read this, the death toll is still mounting and is expected to reach a staggering 100,000+ as the relief work reaches the currently unreachable areas in over 10 countries. Even though their loss is unimaginable for us, we too share their sorrow and hope for the lives and health of millions of people who are facing this terrible tragedy.

For the AIESEC people in that part of the world, I have been able to make contact with all the MCs and have been assured that they are all safe.

Sri Lanka
One of the members lost his house completely due to the Tsunami, but is currently safe with his entire family as they managed to swim away from danger. All the other AIESEC people, including the interns, have been reported to be safe. AIESEC in Sri Lanka has reported that they are playing an active role in supporting the relief work and most members are volunteering for support. If you wish to support the relief efforts in Sri Lanka, you can contact Dan (MCP Sri Lanka) at :

All AIESEC people are safe, but one of the members lost his house completely. He is currently safe with his family and has moved to a different house.

All the AIESEC people in Indonesia, including the interns are safe. There is onlyone LC in the region of Sumatra, and they assure us of the safety of all AIESEC people there. AIESECers are organizing a drive to support the relief efforts there.

All AIESEC people are safe; and the interns traveling to the southern coastal area have returned safely.

All AIESEC people are safe; and the interns traveling to the affected regions have returned safely.

In Kenya and Bangladesh, the MCs have confirmed that all AIESEC people are safe.

On one hand it is relief that our AIESEC people are more or less safe, at same time it does little to mitigate the grief that we feel for millions struck by this tragedy. We all sincerely hope that the affected countries and communities and the international community will be able to deal with this natural disaster as soon as possible minimizing the social and economic damage.

On behalf of AIESEC International,

Rajiv Chandna

big help

"The carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and four other vessels will be stationed off the provincial capital, Banda Aceh, on the northern tip of Sumatra island where the death toll from Sunday's earthquake and tsunami has risen past 45,000.

Conway said a U.S. assessment team was expected in Aceh on Thursday. He said the Lincoln carrier strike group had been in Hong Kong when the tsunami struck and was diverted to the Gulf of Thailand and was now making its way to the Malacca Strait.
" (Reuters)

With the US Carrier comes plenty of helicopters which are badly needed to reach remote areas in Aceh (along with floating hospital, heavy equipments and surveying capabilities). The bottleneck right now lies in the distribution of aids and relief workers.

"An Australian navy ship carrying three Iroquois helicopters and engineers will depart Sydney on Friday, heading for Indonesia via Darwin" (The Jakarta Post)

Aceh needs three things right now: transport, transport, transport.

"The supply effort in Indonesia moved slowly at times. An estimated 250 tons of supplies were grounded by inefficiency and lack of transportation. Indonesian officials awaited the arrival of seven transport planes from Australia and two from Malaysia and Singapore. " (WashingtonPost)

Make a small gesture.


What we feared most is now reality.

A CNN dispatch from Banda Aceh, the capital city of Aceh Province stated "The death toll from Sunday's tsunamis has jumped sharply to over 115,000 after Indonesia reported nearly 80,000 people were killed in that country alone."

Refer to this map of Aceh for the explanation about Tsunami and Earthquake.

The epicenter is located just NorthWest of Simeuleu Island and you can see there are plenty of small cities on the coast directly on the path of the TSunami.

The Simeuleu Island is actually spared of much of the damage because they are so close to the epicenter the Tsunami didn't have enough distance to develop. The flooding in that island is limited to 1 meter (3 feet).

Meulaboh (aerial picture) has a population of approximately 36,000 people and the initial survey of the damage estimate only about 25% of buildings in that city remains.

Banda Aceh, the capital city, is located at the Northernmost side of Sumatra.

Make a small gesture.

grass root Indonesia

Check out for specific information about the situation in Aceh and Sumatra after the Christmas Tsunami tragedy.

Aceh Aid Bucket Briagade blogs from Bali, Indonesia.

Locate your friends/family

"The aim of the ICRC's familylinks website is to help those separated by conflict or disaster to find information about their loved ones in order to restore contact."

ICRC FamilyLinks

Cartoonists perspective

Slate magazine provides a collection of cartoonists perspectives on the Indian Ocean Tsunami tragedy.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

if it smells like a fish ...

Please avoid (hints: no phone number & p.o. box address)

They may turn out to be legit, but for now, avoid them like a plague.

Response on the comment:
"You are incorrect in your assumption that we are scam artists! There is an email address listed on the website that is provided for people like you that have any questions so that we can explain our situation."

Being generous and compassionate doesn't mean you are stupid. Please only donate to the organization that you know and trust. God knows how many random phony bank account masquerading as legit NGOs floating around the Internet right now.

Oh yeah, generally avoid even the formal government account. Consult this Corruption Perception Index first.

Please also be aware that even some the bigger charity organization does pooling donation, where your donation will go to general funding for the organization instead of specific disaster. That's fine and dandy, I just want you to be aware of this.

The mighty American Red Cross get boiled by the American Public for their original intent for "Liberty Fund" in response for 9/11 tragedy.

"Facing a mounting wave of public and Congressional criticism, the American Red Cross announced it will spend the entire $543 million "Liberty Fund" on victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The agency apologized for its earlier plans to use some of the money for other purposes." (ConsumerAffairs)

one click donate

by, to American Red Cross.


AFP reporting from Aceh states "Confirmed deaths from Asia's tsunami catastrophe neared 81,000, with experts predicting much worse to come as the world's biggest ever relief operation stuttered into life against enormous odds."

"make it stop" (tom)

Make a small gesture.

Do we still believe in princess and fairies?

"PHUKET, Thailand - A Swedish toddler was reunited with his weeping father in a Thai hospital Wednesday, days after the 18-month-old was found sitting alone on a roadside in the aftermath of the tsunami disaster. The boy's mother is among some 5,000 people still missing in Thailand.

Hannes was found alone on a roadside near a Thai beach resort Sunday night and he was taken by helicopter to a hospital for treatment. The hospital staff posted his photo on the Internet Monday in an effort to locate his family.

There were reports that an anonymous Thai princess arranged the helicopter that brought Hannes from the road to the hospital." (

It is very rarely this days that we encounter such stories of "small miracles".
Do we still believe in miracles? or do we get caught up by the constant pessimism media, news, the ouside world, the weather, people etc. go around preaching?

The dimension of catastrophe is incredible. The death, poverty, sequels, corruption, etc. you can find around the Tsunamis/earthquakes/floodings/famine is greater than the stories of those people that were actually saved "by miracle".

We strive to look news after news, for which video has the bigger wave, the saddest story, the worst picture of the dead child being given to his lonely father.
And deep inside, some people in the place of the acts is blessing his God, because He gave them the miracle to be alive, probably alone, homeless and useless... but it is still another chance to make of the place he is a better place to be... once again.

Blogs as revolutionary media

Do we act as much as we talk?
We must strive to give our posts the analytical in depth view of disasters in the same way we tend to talk about cultural interaction and diversity, about social responsibility and leadership.
Media is all around... we are the children of the revolution.
This is when all those phrases we learned through our AIESEC years may come alive. Are we up to it?

"For vivid reporting from the enormous zone of tsunami disaster, it was hard to beat the blogs.

The so-called blogosphere, with its personal journals published on the Web, has become best known as a forum for bruising political discussion and media criticism. But the technology proved a ready medium for instant news of the tsunami disaster and for collaboration over ways to help.

Bloggers at the scene are more deeply affected by events than the journalists who roam from one disaster to another, said Xeni Jardin, one of the four co-editors of the site, which pointed visitors to many of the disaster blogs.
"They are helping us understand the impact of this event in a way that other media just can't,"

Blogging from the tsunami, she said, is "more raw and immediate," but the postings still lack the level of trust that has been earned by more established media. "There is no ombudsman for the blogosphere," she said. "One will not replace the other, but I think the two together are good for each other." (NY Times)

Old fashioned technology

"In the aftermath of the tsunami, even Sri Lanka's prime minister had no contact with the outside world until Amateur Radio operators stepped in. Our control center was inside the prime minister's official house in his operational room, wrote the president of Sri Lanka's Amateur Radio Association.

Even satellite phones failed, and only the Amateur Radio HF link remained open. One problem: batteries were running out, and there are no generators to recharge them.
Many radio amateurs on the Indian mainland are said to be pitching in to handle emergency and health-and-welfare traffic. Some communication has been on CW and PSK31 to overcome poor conditions and interference. " (Technocrat)


happy birthday English Rose.

AIESEC Chennai

From words of Khalil Bachooali (former MCP of AIESEC India) he says all of the aiesecers in Chennai are ok, no major damage done.
Trainees as well.
Nothing much to report.

The urge for warning

"India became the first nation stricken by the Indian Ocean tsunami to vow on Wednesday to set up an early warning system, despite the expense and the fact it may not be needed for a generation or longer. Its cost will be of around USD$29MM" (Reuters)

"Japan, one of the world's most earthquake-prone countries, also announced plans to build a system next year to monitor tsunamis in a wide area of the north and west Pacific currently not covered -- including parts of Indonesia -- and said this could expand to cover the Indian Ocean."

"I know it looks a bit like closing the door after the horse has bolted."

The Earth is shifting

For some reason, all the natural disasters in the world have some piece of earth's evolution in it...
It is still a hypothesis that the earth axis is actually shifting, but it is part of the earth's evolution, from the ice, dark ages, then dinosaurs till know...

"Italian space researchers said on Tuesday that the earthquake in Asia two days ago was so powerful that it shifted the axis around which the earth revolves.
"It was so violent that it modified in a considerable way the inclination of the axis of terrestrial rotation," said scientists at an Italian Space Agency centre in the southern town of Matera.
According to Giuseppe Bianco, one of the geological experts whospecialize in finding the exact position of geographical points, the axis moved by about five or six centimetres.
"The variation observed is very small and I don't think it could have any repercussions on the climate," he said. " (Xinhuanet)


It seems that every day add 10,000 UP revision to the toll of this tragedy

"The waters that stole tens of thousands of people from the shorelines of Asia and East Africa on Sunday spewed their bodies back onto beaches on Tuesday, pushing the official death toll near 70,000."(NYTimes)

Most of the increasing toll report comes from Indonesia (my country), mainly Aceh. Indonesia's Ministry of Health said 36,268 people died.

And I am sorry to say that my worst fears about Aceh might be confirmed

"Close promixity to epicenter + 1 million people on the Western Coast = a catastrophic number of casualties." (posted 2 days ago)

The head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs for Indonesia said this to The Jakarta Post "we are probably talking about somewhere in the order of 80,000 people, 50 to 80,000 people, that would be my educated guess,"

If his dire prediction is true, this Tsunami kills beyond 100,000 people.

what we know so far

Digs is most probably in Goa, India, which is on Western Coast of India facing the Arabia Sea. At the time of Tsunami, he'll probably nursing a hang over from a Christmas debauchery the night before. He'll be OK.

Saki was in Phuket, but she's safe and uninjured and now back in Hong Kong.

All the Singapore based nomads are safe (they are either in Singapore, which wasn't affected or not in the region)

All Aiesec Sri Lanka membership and trainees are safe.

What we don't know

The fate of Aiesec Chennai.

Vishen Mohandas, an Aiesec Alumni from Aiesec Michigan currently living in Malaysia. There is no communication from him and I have several requests about him and his family safety.

Confirmation from Aiesec in Thailand, India, Indonesia and Malaysia (if you know, can you post a comment on this post with a copy or email


"I was on vacation in Phuket, Thailand from Dec.24, one of the locations that suffered severe casualties from the Southeast Asian earthquake and tsunami. 5 friends and I were on this vacation, and we all escaped disaster by a hair. I cannot help but believe that some unseen force had protected us and timed our survival. It was that close." (Saki)

Saki wrote about her first hand experience on the Tsunami.

Holding the fort

Hi Folks,


You can update this main blog with any information about this Tsunami by sending an email to Your post will automatically posted to this main blog. Don’t forget to sign it with your name.


Dody G.


"A 150-member Israeli aid delegation canceled its mission to Sri Lanka on Tuesday, after the country - one of the hardest hit in the Asian tsunami disaster - refused to accept the Israeli team, Israel military officials said.

However, Israel is dispatching supplies at Sri Lanka's request, including 10,000 blankets contributed by the Israeli army, tents, nylon sheeting and water containers. The Israeli army's Home Front Command is organizing aid preparations."

market is cruel

"SHREWD investors around the region started picking up stocks linked to infrastructure development yesterday as the focus shifted to reconstruction after Sunday's disaster." (StraitTimes)

on Australians

"EIGHT Australians have been confirmed killed, another eight are missing feared dead and 5000 are out of contact after the Asian tsunami disaster, Foreign Minister Alexander Downer said today." (

bitter hope

"Rapidly climbing death estimates from the earthquake-generated waves that struck a dozen countries Sunday are likely to be highly inaccurate for some time, despite the best efforts of aid officials to nail them down, experts said yesterday.

One day after an earthquake destroyed Bam, in southern Iran, one year ago, the initial estimates of the dead were about 25,000. The estimates rose slowly as freezing weather set in, and Iran's Interior Ministry officially set its estimate at 41,000, a figure widely quoted for three months. In March, the number was revised downward to 26,271, because many people had been counted twice in the original chaos.

The lowered estimate, Mr. McGoldrick said, grew out of efforts by the Red Cross and Red Crescent to figure out why so many people were in their refugee camps.

In the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, up to 10,000 people were initially feared dead after planes struck the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The figure of 6,000 settled in the public consciousness until weeks of careful counting revised it downward to about 3,200. "

In most cases, they are revised down.


"JAKARTA, Indonesia, Dec. 28 (UPI) -- The death toll in at least eight countries from a massive weekend earthquake and tsunami in Asia reached 60,000 Tuesday, Sky News reported." (UPI)

mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, granddaughters, grandparents, boy, girl, cousins, friends ...

take any number and double it....

I just heard someone from the World Health Organisation say "In the next week I expect to see infectious disease claim as many lives as the tsunami itself"

Make it stop.........

Tuesday, December 28, 2004


"Looking for my friends Chuiyet Lian, 49, and John Barsky, 57, (husband and wife) from Los Angeles, California, USA. Chiuyet is Asian, 5'3", with black hair and dark brown eyes, and John is Caucasian, 6'3", with dark brown hair and eyes. They were vacationing in Thailand. Please contact me." (more on CNN)

one beer for one life

" I would encourage all of you to have a few less beers on New Years Eve (which given that a pint in Dublin is about 5 euro, it would go a long way in Asia) and donate that money instead to any of the many agencies accepting donations." (karola)

There isn't many occasion where your simple gesture can help and needed so much. A lot of us starts the new calendar with New Years Resolution to be more generous, compassionate and caring toward others. Well, you can scratch that one item from that list and realize it now. And in the future when people asked you what you did for NYE 2005, you can proudly tell them about the good thing you did on that day.

Help Sri Lanka

Countries that have lost citizens who were traveling abroad

Wikipedia has the details. (41 countries)

Deadliest Quakes

Deadliest Quakes

Published: December 27, 2004
ere are the deadliest quakes of the past 100 years, according to the United States Geological Survey. In some cases, death tolls include those killed in ensuing fires and collapses.
1976 China, Tangshan 255,000 dead (7.5 magnitude)
1927 China, near Xining 200,000
1920 China, Gansu
200,000 (8.6)
1923 Japan, Kwanto
1948 Turkmenistan
110,000 (7.3)
1908 Italy, Messina
up to 100,000 (7.2)
1932 China, Gansu
70,000 (7.6)
1970 Peru
66,000 (7.9)
1935 Pakistan, Quetta
up to 60,000 (7.5)
1990 Iran, Gilan
35,000 (7.7)
2003 Iran, Bam
31,000 (6.8)


"Still alive. We barely survived. Unbelievable" (via John Robb)

"Reading articles about survivors brings to life miracles that happen in times like this. A British paper printed survivor stories that are rather amazing. Another article about a baby saved on a floating mattress, was also pretty incredible." (via Lizabeth)

"i was SO shocked to see the waves that went right into the pool...the place where we sat was completely swept by the waves.all the lazy chairs, tables were gone. so was our that moment i was juz too shocked to move...i then looked down at my feet after the waves hit and there was a stream of mud....i was standing bout 20m from the beach at the end of the pool." (3na)

"I’ve received numerous emails from people searching for news on their loved ones in and around Indonesia. Let me make this clear - the island of Java has not been affected. We are safe. However, it has been announced that west and south Java could be affected by further aftershocks in the next two weeks. Being only 2 miles from the ocean, and at a very low elevation, this does not sit well with me. I’m hoping to leave for Bali in a few days - I need to clear my head." (JavaJive)

"The sheer brute violence of that single wave is staggering. Every house and fishing boat has been smashed, the entire length of the east coast. People who know and respect the sea well now talk of it in shock, dismay and fear. Some work to do this week."(Extra Extra)

"While at sleep, my brother began to pass this idea of the earth shaking. Wait, the earth shaking? What nonsense! He actually did see some movement of the water in his glass, and so did we realize there's something coming our way. The surprise unleased at around 1000 local time when the coastal areas began to feel the surge of sea water rising at hieghts that made people faint." (ceneus)

"So Reg & I are hunkering down for the night in Bambalapitiya. We have one packet of oreoes, one tin of peaches, one tin of pears and several dvds like Tidal Wave: No Escape to sustain us through this long, dreary night of terror." (waywar mutterings)

How can you help if you are in Europe?

I need info on this. Post a comment.


In Germany

or check out

how to help - Information on how to Help Indonesia

Donate Reponsibly.

247 West 37th Street, Suite 1201
New York, N.Y.
10018212-967-7800 x108

45 West 36th Street, 10th Floor
New York, N.Y.

Crisis Fund
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, Pa.

International Response Fund
P.O. Box 37243
Washington, D.C. 20013

Tsunami Emergency
P.O. Box 17090
Baltimore, Md.
21203-7090 800-736-3467

27 South La Patera LaneSanta
Barbara, Calif.

P.O. Box 1856
Merrifield, Va.

Earthquake/Tsunami Relief
1919 Santa Monica Boulevard, Suite 300
Santa Monica, Calif.

South Asia Tsunami Relief
Box 321847A Second Avenue
New York, N.Y.
10017212-687-6200 ext. 851

Southeast Asia Earthquake Response
Dept. WP.O. Box 2669
Portland, Ore.

8320 Melrose Avenue, Suite 200
Los Angles, Calif.

Asia Earthquake/Tidal Wave Relief Fund
54 Wilton RoadWestport, Conn.

Southeast Asia Earthquake Emergency
P.O. Box 6098Burbank, Calif.

nomad's words

"earth is shaking" (triin)

"Through AIESEC you develop friends from all over the world so when you read the news you stop and think about the people you know there and how their lives are being affected. It hits home when you hear that the place you attended your first international conference has been swept away and though you cannot even begin to imagine how it feels you stop and think about your fellow man across the world and send you love, your hope and your prayers." (Jennifer)

" I'd encourage those of you who think prayer is bullshit to put your skepticism to the side just for a moment and just try and send some compassionate thoughts in the direction of the countless people who are suffering right now. What's there to loose really?" (fnord)

"Sorrow...the pictures from today's disaster are shocking, over 11,000 dead so far and the toll is only starting. I am praying for all my friends out there in SE Asia...I hope all of you and your loved ones are OK!"(Suzanne)

"I know this isn't much of relief or consolation to anyone, but I just wish to all friends in South East Asia that they, their family and friends are all safe and sound."(dimitris)

"another tragedy hits the world exactly 25 hours ago. a lot of my friends in madras were lucky and noone they knew got hurt. they are currently going to the beach to search for survivors and help with the relief effort. today reminded me of how lucky i am." (dturk)

"I've been reading about a few people being aghast about the lack of coverage in the US media of the tragedy in south-east asia. I am also in disbelief about the poor coverage that the event has gotten on US sources. I was particularly annoyed with CNN-US because they choose to air special programs about Billy Graham and Mary Magdalene instead of switching to live news. Fortunately down here in Atlanta I get CNN International which has suspended its regular programming to focus on this throughout." (Alex)

"My heart goes out to everyone who has been impacted by earthquake and tsunamis and their destruction." (Nisrin)

caught on camera

Download the video (preferred).

This is a video (11.4 MB) taken from Phuket, Thailand.

NBC10 have collections of videos captured by amateurs.

what happened here

I know you are all surprised by the overlapping numbers and sharp increase of fatality in just 24 hours.

Read the analysis on this topic I posted yesterday.

What we are seeing is the emerging true pictures of what happened in Indonesia, especially the Western Coast of Sumatra.

If you are schocked to read the huge number of casualties in Sri Lanka, which is 1,000 miles away from the epicenter, you will know that yesterday's count of 5,000 casualties reported from Indonesia were too low. Western Coast of Aceh (Aceh is a province on the northern part of Sumatra) is home to about 1 million people and about 155 miles from the epicenter of the quake.

I'm going to throw up.


"Mourners in Sri Lanka buried their dead with bare hands today while displaced and hungry islanders in Indonesia looted stores following explosive tidal waves that the United Nations said may be history's costliest natural disaster. The death toll rose to 55,000, and officials expected it to rise further. "(AP)


"The death toll from the epic tidal waves that rocked 11 countries rose to around 44,000 people on Tuesday after Sri Lanka and Indonesia significantly increased their confirmed deaths. " (MSNBC)

the world moves

"Indian Ocean countries and international aid agencies are putting together what the United Nations says may be the largest relief operation the world has ever seen in response to Sunday's earthquake and tsunamis. The task is especially challenging in smaller countries such as Sri Lanka where the gigantic waves claimed the most victims."(VOA)

more bad news

"The rotting corpses of quake victims piled up Tuesday on Indonesia's Sumatra island where at least 21,000 were dead and more lives were threatened by the possibility of disease outbreaks.
There were apocalyptic scenes in the provincial capital of Banda Aceh where the stench of death hung over the rubble of demolished houses as survivors from Sunday's earthquake and tsunami struggled to dig graves in tropical heat."

The last report from Indonesia was 15,000. It is now 21,000.

From AIESEC Sri Lanka

National President of AIESEC Sri Lanka just posted this to the Global MCP's community:

"Dear MCPs of AIESEC Worldwide,

I am writing to you in a situation where my country has become a living hell.. people are dead.. more than 10000.. it can be going upto more than that.

We need medical supplies and dry food.We also need money to buy medicines.We also need volunteers in the near future to for reconstruction. As AIESEC in Sri Lanka we have mobilized our people for relief work. We are also raising funds to by medicine. If you can please deposit money to AIESEC in Sri Lanka's Bank account. We will use this money to get essential goods.

The account number is
SEYBLKLX 0830 697042 001

Thank you.
We expect your support. This is the time to mobilize our resources and people.

Dhanushka Tennakooon
PresidentAIESEC in Sri Lanka"

I especially like the wording at the end - not "we would like" or "we would appreciate", but:

"We expect your support"

don't despair

You might feel helpless sitting down on your comfortable chair not being able to directly help and sometimes you feel you should be there, on the field.


This disaster needs qualified doctors and medics, construction workers, crane operators, chaplain, logistic experts, relief works, not mere able bodied. There will be enough young able bodied people in the surrounding area to take care of the macabre tasks of cleaning and restoring their community.

Mostly you will be a nuisance because you don't know much about the area, don't speak their local language and off course you occupy a space and require food, shelter and attention.

What they need now are supplies and for supplies, they need money.

In the medium term, they will need tourism dollars to recover their local economy.

If you want to help, be easy on crazy parties and liquors on New Year's Eve and donate the money to the relief effforts instead.


This tragedy happens in equatorial area where the sun shine 365 days a year with average temperature of 30-35 Celcius and humidity 70% - 90% in a rich tropical ecosystem.

And most death can be categorized as drowning deaths.

All these factors contributes to the rapid decomposition of unrecovered bodies (we are on the third day now).

You will start seeing on TV pictures more and more relief workers cover their noses because the stench of deaths will start to be overwhelming. Decomposing bodies however, do not represent a major health risk but it does add to the misery in the surrounding.

Not all bodies are buried by now because the task of mass burial are hard depending on the location and access to excavator machine.

Sanitary concern will be paramount at this time because we have hundreds of thousands of people are being discolated from their houses and community. We will see more casualties from the outbreak of cholera and dysentery (and boy, those two pairs are pretty contagious) from sewage and dirty water. Children are especially very vunerable to these diseases.

When you see casualties number this high, wait until you see the list of the injured. We are talking at least triple or quadruple the death number. Yes, between 120,000 - 150,000 injured , millions displaced and those people need space, medicine, clean water, food, clothing, shelter.

Welcome to tropical hell.

In my island, we usually don't eat fish or shrimp from the surrounding sea after a big ship accidents for obvious reason (fish is not vegetarian ...)


This number will still rise again. I think we will be ending up with above 50,000 casualties by the end of this week.

"The death toll from the epic tsunami that rocked 11 countries rose to 40,000 people today, and food and supplies poured into the region, part of what the U.N. said would be the biggest relief effort the world has ever seen. Millions remained homeless. " (AP)

" Sri Lanka raised its death toll past 18,700. Hundreds died when a train carrying 1,000 passengers from Colombo to Galle was thrown off its tracks by Sunday's waves, police chief B.T.B. Ariyapala said today.

"In Indonesia, the country closest to Sunday's 9.0 magnitude quake that sent walls of water crashing into coastlines thousands of miles away, the count rose to 15,000, a number the vice president said could rise. "

" Purnomo Sidik, the national disaster director, told The Associated Press the toll rose by almost 10,000 people after the government received reports from the previously unreachable western coast of Sumatra. "

" Some 4,400 died in India; 1,500 perished in Thailand. The Red Cross said malaria and cholera could add to the toll. "


Flickr "hands to S. E. Asia" pool.

long way

"I heard on the radio that the sea level at Milford Sound rose/fell 20cm this morning as the Asian tsunami passed. When you consider its something like 9400 km away it gives some idea of the power. '" (Robinz) from New Zealand.


"In spite of a 3800 mile long coastline, India does not have a Tsunami warning system. The top scientist at India's National Oceanographic Institute recently even mocked the idea of a Tsunami in Chennai. " (IndiaTime)

"Philsland (in French) is a subscriber to an earthquake prevention alert: USGS earthquake. He was warned about the earthquake three hours before the waves touched the coasts: " (via loiclemeur)


"The toll from the disaster - with more than 25,000 dead and many unaccounted for - came into sharper relief on a day when it seemed increasingly clear that at least a third of the dead were children, according to estimates by aid officials.


The realization began to emerge Tuesday that the dead included an exceptionally high number of children who, aid officials suggested, were least able to grab onto trees or boats when the deadly waves smashed through villages and over beaches. Children make up at least half the population of Asia." (NYTimes)

dammit !!

more good news

"I was in Phuket, Thailand for vacation for Christmas. I'm alive. I'm okay. But damage has been done - more update to come on my weblog soon...Saki"

let's hang them

Beware of reliefs corruptions.

Affected Countries Corruption Perception Index (the larger the number, the worst it is)

Malaysia 39.
Sri Lanka 62.
Thailand 64.
India 90.
Indonesia 133.
(from Transparency International CPI 2004)

Somalia is not listed on the index because well, it ceased to be a functioning country about 10 years ago.

I bet some deserved-to-be-shot-bastards will try to swindle the outpouring financial support from the international community to those who needed it most.

"Indonesian parliamentarians are justified in demanding that the Rp50 billion ($540,000) taken to earthquake devastated Aceh does not fall into the hands of corrupt officials. " (Laksamana.Net)

Monday, December 27, 2004

tragedy loves tragedy

Another fucked up thing about this Tsunami is that the two most affected area (Eastern Sri Lanka and Aceh) have also been the place of long running armed conflicts, Tamil Tigers and Free Aceh Movement.

on Sri Lanka

"Names and news of friends have started trickling in. Some lost, some confirmed dead, some along with their families. " (Sarath)

"The Sri Lankan government has decided to bury recovered dead bodies in several mass graves in the south and east. " (Colombo Page)

"The next of kin/s and relatives of the Sri Lankan who were in affected areas in Sri Lanka could obtain information on their relatives from the following hotline established by the Prime Minister's Office:

Telephone Nos:
00 94112542871 or
00 94112392047

Fax: 94112321404

This operation is being coordinated personally by the Prime Minister through his Secretary Lalith Weeratunga.

Hotlines established by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

Contact Person :

Ms Shashikala Premawardhane/Ms C.A. Chaminda I Colonne
Telephone : 0094-11-5361938Fax : 0094-11-2422644

If you wish to directly send any consignments of emergency relief, please contact
Ministry of Social Welfare & Women’s Empowerment,
5th Floor, Sethsiripaya,
Battaramulla .
Tel: 94-112-887349 or 50 or 51"


just in case you don't know

The Tsunami hits Sri Lanka in 150 minutes roughly (2 1/2 hours). Sri Lanka is about 1000 miles away.

1000 miles/ 150 minutes = 6.6666666667 miles / minutes.

The Tsunami travelled 400 miles/hour in average or 643.7376 km/hour.

Not even the fastest F1 racing card reach that speed.

400 miles an hour is the average speed. The Tsunami doesn't start from 0 to 400 miles/hour on a whim. There will be built up of speed over the ocean. That means at some point, the Tsunami runs near 500 miles/hour, the speed of a commercial aeroplane.

The Tsunami's 30 feet waves is big (9 meters something) but they are nothing spectacular. Big wave surfers consistently surf on 40 feet or higher monster waves.

It's the speed and the vacuum effect created by such waves (it sucked you from the land to the sea) that kills.

(no, i'm not an oceanologist. I just grew up on a beach in an island off the coast of Borneo so i'm quite familiar with waves).

the worse is yet to come

"If that new estimate proved accurate, the number of deaths in nine countries struck by tsunamis after Sunday morning's gargantuan earthquake 200 miles west of here could eventually total more than 38,000. " (washington post)

The current tally of about 22,000 killed only included estimated 5,000 killed in Sumatra, which is very low considering the epicenter is closest to that island. That island didn't just receive the onslaught of the Tsunami, but also affected by the earthquake impact as well.

"In an interview, Kalla, the Indonesian vice president, said most of information about fatalities has come from the eastern coast of Aceh's province and officials have yet to make contact with four districts along the western coast, which faced the epicenter of the earthquake. "

Sri Lanka is about 1,000 miles from the epicenter and has the most listed casualties as of now. The western coast of Aceh is about 155 miles away from the epicenter.

"But an aerial survey of the western coast, home to about 1 million people, revealed extensive destruction. Kalla added that top provincial officials, including the acting governor, would seek to travel to the western coast Tuesday. "

Indonesia will most probably revise their estimate to 20,000 soon as more information streams in from the worst affected area.

Close promixity to epicenter + 1 million people on the Western Coast = a catastrophic number of casualties.

I hope i'm totally wrong with this analysis.

Oh by the way, all this while, Aceh operates without a governer (just by acting governor) because the current governor is on trial for corruption

"Aceh Governor Abdullah Puteh, who is undergoing questioning on corruption charges in Jakarta today, acknowledged in his report to the provincial parliament this year that more than 40% of Acehnese live below the poverty line. " (

those fuckers

"Asian officials conceded Monday that they failed to issue broad public warnings immediately after a massive undersea earthquake in Indonesia, which could have saved countless lives from the subsequent giant waves that smashed into nine countries as far away as Africa

Waves began pummeling southern Thailand about one hour after the earthquake. After 2 1/2 hours, the torrents had traveled some 1,000 miles and slammed India and Sri Lanka. Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, and Bangladesh were also hit. Eventually they struck Somalia, on the east coast of Africa, where hundreds were reported killed."


"Minutes after the earthquake hit northern Sumatra at 7.58am on Sunday, officials of the Meteo-rological Department, who were at a seminar in Cha-am, convened an emergency meeting chaired by Supharerk Tansrirat-tanawong, director-general.

“The very important factor in making the decision was that it’s high [tourist] season and hotel rooms were nearly 100-per-cent full. If we issued a warning, which would have led to evacuation, [and if nothing happened], what would happen then? Business would be instantaneously affected. It would be beyond the Meteorological Department’s ability to handle. We could go under, if [the tsunami] didn’t come,� said a source who attended the meeting." (The Nation)

battered day

"Almost every family in Bam lost someone to the tremors that rocked the southern city in the early hours of 26 December 2003. " (bbc) at 01:58 GMT (bbc)

2004/12/26 00:58:49 3.24N 95.82E 10.0 9.0 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA

The Iranian quake was exactly one year ago, separated by EXACTLY 1 hour, 1 minutes, 57 seconds.


Iranian Earthquake happened on Friday, December 26, 2003 at 01:56:52 (UTC) (USGS)

Amateur Radio Network

""There is presently no communication from Nicobar Islands," Majumdar reports, noting that Nicobar received more damage than Andaman. McClenny says the VU4RBI/VU4NRO DXpedition team continues to pass traffic and occasionally hand out QSOs. C. K. "Ram" Raman, VU3DJQ, reports he was in contact with Sarath, 4S7SW, a physician operating from the vicinity of a hospital in Mathara, Sri Lanka, which also was heavily hit by the tsunamis. "He is requesting food, clothing and medicines for relief," Raman reported. "He will be listening 14.195 and 21.295." Telephones are not working there, he said. " (AARL)


2004/12/27 14:46:45 12.36N 92.50E 10.0 5.8 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/27 11:57:53 8.07N 92.28E 10.0 5.1 NICOBAR ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/27 10:46:45 13.58N 93.07E 10.0 5.4 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/27 10:46:35 13.63N 93.10E 10.0 5.2 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/27 10:36:23 38.75N 122.73W 2.9 4.3 NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
2004/12/27 10:05:00 4.78N 95.12E 10.0 5.9 NORTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
2004/12/27 09:39:03 5.38N 94.71E 10.0 6.3 NORTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
2004/12/27 06:59:12 3.01N 95.54E 10.0 5.4 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/27 03:04:38 4.26S 152.68E 64.7 5.2 NEW BRITAIN REGION, P.N.G.
2004/12/27 00:49:26 12.98N 92.45E 10.0 6.1 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/27 00:32:13 5.50N 94.46E 10.0 6.0 NORTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA

2004/12/26 20:50:31 6.31N 126.86E 94.7 5.8 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINES
2004/12/26 19:19:53 2.77N 94.16E 10.0 6.2 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/26 19:03:46 4.07N 94.20E 10.0 5.6 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/26 18:42:41 13.75N 92.98E 10.0 5.3 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 15:12:21 6.70N 93.02E 10.0 5.6 NICOBAR ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 15:06:32 3.70N 94.02E 10.0 5.7 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/26 14:48:41 13.60N 92.87E 10.0 5.9 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 13:56:37 2.79N 94.46E 10.0 5.9 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/26 12:11:55 11.59N 92.45E 10.0 5.5 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 12:09:41 12.21N 92.62E 10.0 5.4 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 11:05:00 13.54N 92.88E 10.0 6.3 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 10:19:29 13.45N 92.79E 10.0 6.2 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 10:18:12 8.95N 93.73E 10.0 5.5 NICOBAR ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 09:20:01 8.87N 92.38E 10.0 6.5 NICOBAR ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 07:38:24 13.12N 93.05E 10.0 5.8 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 07:07:09 10.34N 93.76E 10.0 5.7 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 06:21:58 10.62N 92.32E 10.0 5.7 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 04:21:26 6.90N 92.95E 10.0 7.3 NICOBAR ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 03:08:42 13.81N 92.97E 10.0 6.1 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 02:59:12 3.18N 94.26E 10.0 5.9 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/26 02:51:59 12.51N 92.59E 10.0 6.0 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 02:36:06 12.14N 93.01E 10.0 5.8 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 02:34:50 4.10N 94.18E 10.0 5.8 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA
2004/12/26 02:22:01 8.81N 92.54E 10.0 5.9 NICOBAR ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 02:15:57 12.35N 92.53E 10.0 5.8 ANDAMAN ISLANDS, INDIA REGION
2004/12/26 01:48:46 5.38N 94.44E 10.0 5.8 NORTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
2004/12/26 00:58:49 3.24N 95.82E 10.0 9.0 OFF W COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA

more good news

Siffaan, former MCp of Sri Lanka is fine... all AIESECers and trainees in Sri Lanka are ok as well. They were all inland, so no harm done from that side (bea)

How it happened

Animation from (NOOA)

"The epicenter of this earthquake was a little over six miles deep. Most megathrust quakes occur anywhere from 10-500 miles below the surface. If this quake had occurred at a much deeper depth, chances are the tsunamis would not have formed. Secondly, it is a solid 9 on the Richter scale. 9's are rare. What a 9 means is that this quake had ~30x more energy than an 8. The scale is exponential so to measure a 9, it is the equivalent of 31,800 1 megaton nuclear bombs going off all at once. "(beerisforamateurs)

"The devastating megathrust earthquake of December 26, 2004, occurred on the interface of the India and Burma plates and was caused by the release of stresses that develop as the India plate subducts beneath the overriding Burma plate. The India plate begins its descent into the mantle at the Sunda trench, which lies to the west of the earthquake's epicenter. The trench is the surface expression of the plate interface between the Australia and India plates, situated to the southwest of the trench, and the Burma and Sunda plates, situated to the northeast.

In the region of the earthquake, the India plate moves toward the northeast at a rate of about 6 cm/year relative to the Burma plate. This results in oblique convergence at the Sunda trench. The oblique motion is partitioned into thrust-faulting, which occurs on the plate-interface and which involves slip directed perpendicular to the trench, and strike-slip faulting, which occurs several hundred kilometers to the east of the trench and involves slip directed parallel to the trench. The December 26 earthquake occurred as the result of thrust-faulting. " (USGS)

More info from NYTimes.

"How fast can such a wave go?In the open ocean, it can travel as fast as 800 kilometers (500 miles) per hour—like a commercial airplane—so it took two or three hours. This leaves time for a system to warn people, but there wasn’t one in place." (MSNBC)

In this case, the Tsunami reached Sri Lanka, 1000 miles away from the epicenter in just under 2 1/2 hours.

"The resulting swell, which can be hundreds of kilometres across, has little in common with normal ocean waves, which are generated by wind and tides.
The near-instantaneous movement creates a body of water that can travel at speeds approaching 1,000 kilometres an hour.
A tsunami is usually just one or two metres high in the open sea, but it undergoes a startling transformation as it approaches shore.
Since the water's volume remains the same as it meets shallower water, it is pushed upward -- creating a looming wall of water that can be taller than an eight-storey building."


"The following is a revised REPEAT revised release by the United States Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center: A great earthquake occurred OFF THE WEST COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA, about 250 km (155 miles) south-southeast of Banda Aceh, Sumatra or about 1260 km (780 miles) south-southwest of Bangkok, Thailand at 5:58 PM MST yesterday, Dec 25, 2004 (Dec 26 at 7:58 AM local time in Indonesia). A REVISED MAGNITUDE OF 9.0 WAS COMPUTED FOR THIS EARTHQUAKE. The magnitude of this earthquake has been revised to 9.0 based on additional data. This is now the fourth largest earthquake in the world since 1900 and is the largest since the 1964 Prince William Sound, Alaska earthquake. The magnitude was furnished by the Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts. " (USGS)


"Long story short, we got on the beach but were too low when the tidal wave struck. It created a flash flood effect and I was in the middle of rapids containing debris, wood and all matter of building material. Ton Sai, the main village and also the pier, are completely leveled is the rumor." (Evelyn)

"Later on we went down to the beach and believe me, the paradise has been changed to hell. We know also for sure that the official figures underestimate the number of casualtiesa, if you think about all the fishermen." (Paschal)

"Then I noticed that the water around me was rising, climbing up the rock walls of the island with astonishing speed. The vast circle of golden sand around Weligama Bay was disappearing rapidly, and the water had reached the level of the coastal road, fringed with palm trees." (Michael)

"once in my life I was glad I had had a bit too much to drink the night before "(Shandy)

"When a rush of water hit the tip of the beach a few metres away, I joked that the unexpected wave was God's proxy vote on the controversial agenda item." (Kimina)

"She said that she didn't know which child to pick up because she couldn't carry them all " (hosted by BBC)

"It seems the north-western area of Somalia, Puntland, was worst hit. Many fishermen who ply the warm waters of the Indian Ocean in flimsy, handmade boats simply did not return home. " (BBC Reporters' Logs)

"The consulate called again after 11:00, and asked me to come in. We had to try and account for the many US citizens living here and in the other affected areas in our district. It was chaos at first because power/phones were down in the beach areas, where there are many wealthy subdivisions inhabited by expats. We couldn't contact hardly anyone for the first half hour or so, but by around 1:30 we started to reach people." (Prince)

"Just wanted to let you know that Jet Li is missing after the big Earthquake in Asia. According to the Taiwanese tv-station TVBS he was on holiday in the Maldives-islands with his wife and children. His manager tried to get in contact with Li after the tsunami's destroyed most of those islands but can't get hold of him. He's officially on the missing persons-list for the Maldives." (Moo)

"Chinese kung fu film star Jet Li, who was in the Maldives on holiday,called his Hong Kong agent to report he and his family are safe. " (

""Water started climbing," he said. He scrambled to the roof of his jeep, but it was not high enough. "The water kept coming. In a few minutes my jeep was under water."" (hosted by New York Times)

"Flipping through the various news stations, I came upon MetroTV - an Indonesian station. There is none of the edited footage being looped on BBC or CNN - they’re showing rooms full of children who’ve drowned, stacks of bodies being taken away in ambulances, mothers finding their infants dead. The hardest part is seeing the children - they are showing a dozen children lying in a row, all dead.

"Rest in peace little ones"
" (javajive)

donations (or how you can help)

India: Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund, by bank transfer, or by credit card
Sri Lanka: Reliefweb (United Nations office)
The Canadian Catholic Organization for DEVELOPMENT AND PEACE (CCODP) is accepting funds to aid victims
Sustainable Development and Ecological Development Society seeks to raise $100,000 for affected population in India.
Canadian Red Cross is calling for cash donations
Red Cross/Red Crescent is accepting donations
Via Tim Blair: Jay Manifold has a list of relief organizations you can donate to; Indian blogger Here’s a list of banks in India that are taking donations
Oxfam is taking donations
Save the Children is creating an Asia Earthquake/Tidal Wave Relief Fund
CARE Australia
has launched an earthquake appeal
AmeriCares is accepting donations

(source The Command Post)

revised South Asia earthquake map

(courtesy of Reuters)

a few good news

Beatriz: UPDATED! says:
Hey Dody
Beatriz: UPDATED! says:
I hear dfrom suzanne your family is ok
Beatriz: UPDATED! says:
I also talked to Ceci Tam and she says all the singapore based nomads are ok, nothing happened there or to them and our indonesian Bulan is currently in australia... so nothing to report from that front
Beatriz: UPDATED! says:
some people has asked, so it would be nce if you could post it in the webpage

(weaw is in Thailand and there is no confirmation from her yet. There is Aiesec Chennai (Madras) and there are no news about their well being received yet.)

So far

Sri Lanka: 10,897
India: 6,597
Indonesia: 4,725
Thailand: 866
Malaysia: 51
Maldives: 43
Myanmar: 56
Bangladesh: 2
Somalia 100
Total: 23,337

"Government Prepares 3 Hectares for Mass Burial "(Laksamana.Net) - Indonesia

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Dear god, it's even hit Somalia

Emergency Phone Numbers


People concerned for the welfare of friends and relatives can call the emergency rescue centre at (076) 214492 or (01) 643 2755.

From outside Thailand, call (international access code) 66 76 214492 or (international access code) 66 1 643 2755." (The Nation)

Seeds of India appeal (AlertNet.Org)

"Appeal Title: Rapid Assessment and Immediate Relief to Tsunami Affected Population, India
Target: US$ 100,000"

"Mode of International Fund Transfer: Account Name: SEEDS Account Number: 52810017829 Bank: Standard Chartered Bank, M-1, South Extension Part-II, New Delhi, INDIA Swift Code: SCBLINBBDEL

Mode of National Fund Transfer: Crossed cheque or bank draft in the name of `SEEDS’ Send to SEEDS, D-6, Panchsheel Enclave, New Delhi- 110017 "

Blogging the disaster

Plenty of local information coming from bloggers about this disaster - which BBC is reporting to have killed at lead 7,000 people with that number set to increase substantially. A lot of these people are expected to be tourists - this is the coastal regions of South East Asia, 2 days after Christmas.

Loads of coverage and linking here, updated reallty regularly. is covering the Thai side of things really well - apparently the Grand-Daughter of the King of Thailand is one of the dead....

Petaling Street, a hub for Malaysian Blogs, is holding it down on the Malaysia front.

Amazing user submitted photos of the scene are being submitted here.

Impacted Areas

(frequently updated)

Coverage by Singapore's The Straits Times. Use this login info to read the news details.

Blogosphere coverage on the earthquake.

Excellent coverage by The Command Post.



"On Phuket, Somboon Wangnaitham, deputy director of the Wachira Hospital, said one of the worst hit areas was the populous Patong beach, where at least 32 people died and 500 were injured." (AP) - Dec 26

Koh Phi Phi

"On the Andaman Sea island of Phi Phi -- where ``The Beach'' starring Leonardo DiCaprio was filmed -- 200 bungalows at two resorts were swept away, along with some of their staff and customers." (AP) ) - Dec 26


"The Ministry of Health put the death toll at 1,873 across the provinces of Aceh and North Sumatra on the northern tip of Sumatra island." (The Jakarta Post)

First hand account from India
"The wave(s) that came were 4-5 m high. If they could pick up those cars and throw them over the fence, we wouldn't have had a chance. " (via AEBrain)

Sri Lanka

"The worst known death toll so far was in Sri Lanka, where a million people were displaced from wrecked villages. Some 20,000 soldiers were deployed in relief and rescue and to help police maintain law and order. Police chief, Chandra Fernando said at least 3,000 people were dead in areas under government control." (AP) - Dec 26

"Dec 26, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government has declared a state of national disaster after massive tidal waves killed over 1500 people this morning. " (Colombo Page)


"KUALA LUMPUR: At least 53 people were killed, scores injured and 34 reported missing in several parts of Malaysia when tidal waves of up to five metres high hit the coastal regions as a result an earthquake in Sumatra.
Officials have described it as the worst natural disaster in Malaysia’s history.
Penang was the worst hit, with 38 reported dead and 30 missing at press time.
In Kedah, 12 more were reported dead and three missing, in Perak two dead and one missing and Selangor one dead. " (The Star) - Dec 26


Tidalwaves map

Please note that this map is not that accurate. The epicenter of the Earthquake has yet to be determined, but you can use this map as a visual guide to guess which areas affected the most by this largest earthquake in 40 years.

More information about the quake by USGS Earthquake Hazard Program.

"A great earthquake occurred at 00:58:50 (UTC) on Sunday, December 26, 2004. The magnitude 8.9 event has been located OFF THE WEST COAST OF NORTHERN SUMATRA. (This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.) "

Calling South East Asia

"The most powerful earthquake in 40 years struck south Asia this morning, triggering tsunamis that smashed into villages, resorts and tourist isles, killing thousands and leaving hundreds missing. Sri Lanka and India were hit hardest as the tsunamis, some 30 feet high, washed away fishermen, tourists, cars and beach side stalls." (NYTimes)

We have a lot of nomads located around the area. Can we get local coverage from the region on this terrible tragedy? Let me know.

We need links from local news, blogs and places where people can help, donate, send money and supplies, etc. Either post them directly to this main blog or dump it to

Google will be pretty aggressive in indexing blogs on tragedies like this and a lot of people will be looking for ways to help. Let this be one more place for people to read, learn and help on the Net.

Update: Goa, where digidy presumably located right now is located on the Arabia Sea part of India so I don't expect it to receive much impact from the Tsunami. The biggest distruction happens on the coasts facing the Bengal Bay.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Right on the money

John Battelle, who's excellent Searchblog is a must read if you're interested in the future of culture and the internet, made a bunch of predictions at the end of 2003, on what 2004 would look like online. He's reviewing those predictions now, and as usual, he was pretty much spot on the money with all of them. However, one prediction in particular is particularly relevant to us here at nomadlife:
2. Along those lines (and no surprise to this readership, but still and all...), blog ecologies of like-minded folks will garner increasing cultural and social power. We've seen this happen first in the technology and media space, and recently politics has figured it out too. 2004 will see the rest of the world join in, especially in natural communities where power is projected: think professional verticals of finance, law, medicine, marketing.
And nomadic travelling ex-students.

Seriously though, nomadlife is part of a growing segment of blog ecologies - think of politics - DailyKos, BlogsForBush, culture - Metafilter, Kuro5Hin, technology - Slashdot.......The list goes on and on. The cool thing is, I'm not familiar with anything quite like nomadlife. The closest would be homesick - a blogosphere of Aussie expats all around the world, and a very good one at that.

So here it is - are we early movers in our segment? Can we capture a whole new part of the internet real estate boom? Like Slashdot, could be become large enough that linking to a site brings down its server and is known as getting "nomadlife'd"?

Thursday, December 23, 2004

due milla quattro

The curtain of our 2004 lives is slowy coming down and the orchestra playing their last dying notes. The play is about to end.

How has it been?

Good? Bad? Coudabeenbetter? Interesting? Exciting?
Boring? Sad? Hard?

Have you been a naughty one? Be all you can be? A saint?

If you have one sentence to describe your year, what will it be?

Logo idea

nomadlife logos

I actually really like logo Dody just posted - but just wanted to throw in my two cents on a possible secondary logo. This one could work more like a stamp or something like that on each individual blog?

Anyhow two possible variants shown above. These were produced using a patented CrappyMation system involving Microsoft Clip art, that "Paint" program, and lots of lassoo work. In my imagination the plane image is more stylised, but I cant draw so I just take whatever the good MS Clip art soup kitchen feeds me.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

For Christmas: The gift that keeps on giving

Get your minds out of the gutter everyone, I'm talking about expanding the nomadlife community. When Dody and I first started discussing the nomadlife idea we knew that the key would be the people; start with a few key "connectors" and grow from there like a wildfire. Our target was 100 bloggers by the end of the year; we've already achieved that.

Now it's time to take a driver's seat in the development and expansion of our little "tribe." A phrase many of us are familiar with is "sustainable growth"... we need to keep gathering "connectors" into the fold; interesting people with an interesting perspective on life and who have networks. We need to keep expanding the member base, and further developing the content on the main page.

If you have interesting friends who's story you think should be told (doesn't matter where they live or what they do), getting them to join nomadlife would be an excellent gift both to them and to our rapidly expanding reader base. Remember, this community is open to all AIESEC members, trainees, alumni and friends of AIESEC (vouched for by a current member of the nomadlife tribe).

Write to your friends ask them to join by opening a weblog account at; and then once they have contacted Dody they will need to change their settings and render to nomadlife.

You all did it so you know how it works; and as a reminder there are more detailed instructions here:

Monday, December 20, 2004

Does anyone know about E-books licensing???

I need to know if it is possible to get a license to make copies of e-books from American or English publishers like Pearson, McGrill Hill or Wiley (for lucrative purposes). I have heard that in India for example, they make personalized books by printing some chapters from different books and put them on one manual. I am looking for this license guys!!! Does anybody have information about this??


You can find more at

Close ? Hit ? Miss ?

Is the tent better than camel?

Yes, they can be in different colors.

your weblog on google

Google suggest- very cool. So if you start to type- nom (the 2nd suggestion is nomad). If you type nomadlife: there is 2,730 results returned by google. Many of our websites are listed there. Very cool both for google and nomadlife. Whereas if u search on "normal google" , it comes up with 3,200 entries. I'm just curious how google algo works, seems that many ppl knows about it but me. Tell me someone. (Kai)