“The most destructive cyclone that hit Australia occurred on Christmas Eve in 1974. Cyclone Tracy wiped out over 70% of Darwin’s buildings and 40,000+ people were left homeless. An eighteen year old backpacker from East Timor couldn’t return back home to Dili. No flights were operating and his passport was missing in action.
What was supposed to be a 2 week adventure ended up being 39 years!
This guy would end up being my Dad and if it wasn’t for Cyclone Tracy I’m pretty certain my sister and I wouldn’t have been born and given the chance to grow up in one of the best countries in the world.”- Linda Lai (my sister)
Only a few days ago I was still in the searing heat of East Timor, trying my best to find a connection with the country my parents called home as children. The untouched natural beauty of the island is surrounded by the chaos of litter and unfinished roads in the town centre. It is somewhat ugly and beautiful at the same time and has so much potential to grow as an independent country. The people are friendly and the mountains and surrounding beaches are like magic, so pristine and untouched.
I will let the photos do the talking here…
– Shirlene Lai Allison xo