When Canadian journalist Anne Marie Abeyesinghe Mediwake visited Sri Lanka six years ago it was an emotional homecoming, she was returning to her land of birth to cover the aftermath of the tsunami disaster. She traveled with her father around the country to survey destruction unleashed on costal areas while filming a documentary.
Mediwake’s Hiace van rolled through winding narrow, sometimes heavily damaged roads forcing the entourage to make regular roadside rest stops. On one of these occasions she visited a fruit stand and bought some bananas, including three bananas that were fused together by nature.
“The people in the car started to laugh, saying it was an omen I was going to have triplets. I thought it was funny and took a photograph with me and this triple banana,” she said in an interview with The Sri Lanka Reporter.
Two and a half years later she was pregnant with triplets, her husband Darryl Konynenbelt, who is also a journalist remembered the Sri Lankan triple banana incident and began sifting through old albums to locate the picture.
Born in Kandy in 1975 to a mother of Scottish origin and a Sri Lankan father, Mediwake grew up in Lethbridge, Alberta aspiring to become a lawyer.
“I always wanted to be a lawyer, even in the fourth grade I decided on becoming lawyer. I was watching too much Cosby show with Dr. Huxtable,” she says.
The dream of becoming a lawyer was within grasp for Mediwake who was recognized as gifted student and enrolled into accelerated learning programs.
Backing her skills in public speaking, theatre and researching she selected journalism as her pre-law degree and never looked back. Mediwake now hosts the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s (CBC) Toronto news on weeknights alongside Jamaican-born broadcast journalist Dwight Drummond.