Photo Quiz- Sam


This quiz goes back to your childhood.

Can you Identify the individuals  in this 1959 photo and the location?



Answer and Discussion;

I enjoyed your responses particularly the analysis from Seelan! Congratulations to Deepthie. You correctly identified the main character as Sir John Kotalawala, the 3rd Prime Minister of Ceylon serving from 1953 -1956. He lost the election badly to SWRD Bandaranayake in ’56 who ran on a nationalistic platform. Kothalawala was a very wealthy aristocrat ( Kalu Suddha) known for his flamboyant life style divorced from his wife,  often nicknamed Playboy PM. He was known to have had many mistresses both in SL and in England. Some say he lost the election for two notable gaffes. He has once publicly stated that he will put tar on the heads monks who opposed him (“mama unge thatteta thara damanawa”) He also kicked fellow parliamentarian M. S. Themis Appuhamy’s ass on the Parliament stairway simply because he called him Hello John! My sources say that his personal care attendant Banda was his offspring from one of the local mistresses (one of many) Upon losing the election he promptly retired from politics,left the country and lived in Kent, England. This photo was probably taken when he revisited the Island in’59, vacationing in Nuwara Eliya. The woman to his right Marlene Van Ranzow, a singer who performed at the “Little Hut” night club at the Mt Lavinia Hotel at the time. I am not able to identify the others, perhaps family, more likely girl friends. He was closely related to the Senanayake’s. I will add some links to more information on Sir John on the comments below that you might enjoy reading. You may continue with responses to this if you have anything more to add. Thanks for playing ’64 Batch Photo quiz.


Sir John in Kent England  with girl friends



17 thoughts on “Photo Quiz- Sam

  1. Hey Sam – you are quick on the uptake- giving us no ‘break in between !

    Nice pic- nice folks, very posh looking, seems every one is celebrating the old dude’s b’day or something .
    Seems like visitors ‘ from abroad ‘ as we used to say those days .

    Recognize the dress style of the older girl- I used to sew and wear those dresses, before I started to wear sari the next year .
    The two ladies on either side of the old dude- ? wife and daughter ?

    I think, the guy looks like old Sir John Kotelawela – but, he had no ‘wife and daughter ‘ that I know of .
    Dont know the rest of the gang .

    Location- some posh garden in Colomba Hatha ?

    1959– I was in gr 9 I think- with my nose in the books , and ear to the radio- listening to Elvis Presley !!
    ” those were the days ” !!
    waiting for the ID of these nice people .
    Deepthie .


  2. This is challenging – wait till I send you the photos of my grand parents & ask you to identify!
    Anyway this looks like some one the size of “Bigga” went to England to study & got married to an English girl , came back to Ceylon with their westernised daughter to visit his sister & nieces – and they took them to a place like the Rose garden in Peradeniya, 58 years ago. The 2nd youngest may be one of our batch mate??? Who is that ? Please put up your hand.


    – some ‘bigga’ returning to show off to his country cousins !

    I can almost hear ‘came back with an accent ‘ !!!!

    That sweet little girl- the second one from the rt extreme- if you look closely , even looks like me, when I was about 13, 14 yrs old . !- pretty little thing.
    (.But, it is NOT me !- -I have NO white relatives- )

    She must be the one in med school- come on- ‘fess up ‘ !!

    OK Seelan- your turn next for photo quiz submission !- send in your Achchi and Seeya photos ! -but, you already told us the answer !!

    I am going to town to do groceries- today is friday.- and I have NO Man Friday to help out .

    This is real fun !
    Eagledeepthie .


  4. I cannot identify the family. Looks like a wealthy family from the outfits.

    Location. Hakgala Gardens , Hakgala ( Nuwara Eliya )



  5. Hey Ranjani !
    You finally ‘woke up’ !!

    Welcome — good to have you in the Photo Quiz fold!!-

    yours may be correct on the answer . !

    Sam- out with it please- I cannot take this suspense anymore !!!!!

    I think, your dad, and uncle Cyril, and Ranaya were class mates.

    M y amma used to tell me that Ranaya delivered me !!

    Anyway – Savitri Rajendran ( she was with you and me and ? praxy at HFC ) married Gamini- Ranaya’s youngest son – and I think, his first wife passed away post partum, in Ceylon, soon after Gamini was born – and Ranaya was in England doing his Fellowship or something like that, and returned with a new wife it seems — sad — long story here– so my uncles and and aunts used to tell me , when I used to talk about my times at Med School .

    The gardens- yes- it looks like a posh up country place, looking at the trees – N’ eliya, Hakkgala , Peredeniya .
    never could afford holidays up there, back then .

    I was too much of a gamaya girl to hang out in these fancy places back then .- other than P’deniya .

    Anyway- very interesting seeing the varied responses – as for me- I dont have a clue !!

    keep going folks-
    keep the suspense going !!
    Deepthie .


  6. Absolutely no idea, I am completely bowled
    I admire batch mates, those attempting solve
    Tend to go along the lines, Seelan expressed
    Bow down to superior memory, few elucidated



  7. good grief !
    I nailed it down right from the word get go – as Sir John Kotelawela !

    ok- I am giving my self a pat on the back – since so far, no one told me I got it right .

    ok- ok – stop wailing – cry baby …

    Sam- did you not read through the comments –?
    mine was ‘comment #1 –
    Oh well- I got lost in the crowd – you guys and gals — could not see the trees for the forest seems like !

    wise old eaglewoman !


  8. Calm down Deepthie, Read my comment again. I put my answer at the bottom of the main page above and I complemented you there!


  9. Gee- Iam getting OLD for sure !! and worse, IMPATIENT !!
    SORRY SAM !– I missed it as I scrolled down toooo fast !
    so, I read it again, and saw your note to read it at the bottom of the main page- and saw it just now !
    I could not believe my self when I saw the photo and the long write up– cannot hold my level of concentration to read through all that .
    Rani- you got the Kandawela part right- perhaps you may have even visited this place .

    you know Sam, I am not the best in these tecy stuff .
    Very Sorry — Sam !
    Live and Learn – and many thanks for Lessons Learnt on the Photo Quiz !!


  10. Hey Sam,
    I wish we had a Sir Winston Churchill today…
    I wonder what the world would be, if we had one like him today ..

    It made me feel good to see him’ come alive ‘ in your little video clip .
    I am a great fan of WC- and have read his books on World War 11, a very famous historical book on the happenings of that time .

    HIs mother- Jennie Jerome- was an American, and one of the most beautiful women at that time and it was she who molded her son’s thinking process , when he was sent to India as a young man, as part of the British Raj at that time , and he was bored out of his skull !
    Then,she sent him some books- to keep his mind alive in the heat of India.
    The book “Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire ” by Gibbons ( I think it was Gibbons ) – was one of them , and young Winston learned his lessons well. reading through this book it seems – and the rest is history.

    Thanks for that little video clip-
    deepthie .


  11. Dear Deepthie,
    Sam tricked us all except you! You nailed it immediately. CONGRATULATIONS. As usual I submitted my Jathaga – didn’t work.


  12. Hey Seelan- you are ever sooo sweet to comfort the cry baby !’

    I am getting crabby in my old age, but, the old neurons are still working, but the newer ones seemed to have atrophied !

    Love your Jathaka Katha from Down Under- to read them first thing in the morning , is always fun.
    it is good to have friends that wake up with the rising sun.
    By the time The Sun gets here, you folks are on Dream time .

    Lets wait and see what trick the Web Master will pull out of his sleeve for the next one !!!!

    Any way- I am having LOTS OF FUN with this Photo Quiz game .
    I am going on a little weekend outing later in the day , so, you folks may not hear from me for a day – giving all of you a well earned break from Eagle Rantings !!
    eagledeepthie .


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