The Lady


As we approach the festive season it feels like the world has very little to celebrate. The tragedy that has befallen Paris and its citizens will weigh heavily on our minds, along with earlier atrocities in that same city, as will the plight of those fleeing conflict in Syria. It’s only days since a plane was apparently blown apart over the Sinai peninsula killing all on board, and here is another disaster on a heartbreaking scale. This weekend’s news was riddled with more sadness in the shape of a train derailment in France and a light aircraft crash in Somerset. The disturbing events of 2015 raise a lot of questions to which there are no easy answers. I should travel to work in Central London tomorrow with a renewed sense of unease: this is one of the many dark things the terrorists wish for. Their wishes will not be granted.

However there is a glimmer of hope among the macabre headlines. After years in opposition to the military government in Burma (Myanmar), Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy has won a fulsome election victory. ‘The Lady’, as she is affectionately known, is finally poised to become leader (if not president) of Burma, having endured over 20 years in detention for her efforts to bring democracy to this beautiful country. The weight on her shoulders can never have felt greater. The expectation is that she will negotiate a peaceful transition, navigate ethnic tensions and bring much needed prosperity to the country she loves. This will be no mean feat, but let’s hope for the sake of Burma’s people that she will succeed. In this season of ill will we could all do with a little good news.

The photograph above was taken on Inle Lake in 2012 when we visited Burma on holiday. Read more here.

Waterlilies for offerings, Inle Lake, Burma, October 2012