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Monday, November 07, 2005

Those geography lessons can sure pay off

The death toll of last year's tsunami might have been higher by a 100 bodies except for the prescience of a 10-year-old English girl who knew her geography lessons. Tilly Smith, now 11, was on vacation with her parents at a Thai resort last December. Minutes before the tsunami hit, Tilly was walking with her mother along the beach when she saw water bubbling along the edge. "The water was coming in, but it wasn't going out again. It was coming in, and then in, and then in, towards the hotel," the young girl recounted.

For the uninformed this might have just been a curious water phenomenon. But two weeks earlier, Tilly's geography class had done a lesson on tsunamis and the girl recognized the signs that the earthquake-driven waves were imminent. The hysterical Tilly had to convince her doubtful parents, but once she did, her father quickly informed the resort's management while Tilly ran to the Japanese chef, who understood the word "tsunami." The young girl then dashed toward the beach to warn the 100 or so beachcombers.

Based on the warnings of the ten-year-old, the whole resort evacuated just in time.

In appreciation for her efforts, the United Nations invited Tilly to visit on Thursday and the young girl got to meet former president Bill Clinton, the U.N. envoy for the tsunami recovery.

So who says we don't need to know geography? I'm sure more than a few people are glad that Tilly paid attention to her geography lessons.

Per ABC News.

Sharon Cullars Coffee Talk at 11/07/2005 06:19:00 AM Permanent Link     | | Home


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