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Curious Cunami Care

2005/01/08

18 Nivôse CCXIII

Provost, Nouvelle-Cournouaille, Louisianne

The clatter of dishes and the rumble of speech of happily dining customers are not unexpected in restaurants most of the time. And yet this is. In the small ‘hole-in-the-wall’ Bangkok Classic of downtown Provost, most nights the thoughts of reservations and hour waits are unthinkable. Tonight and every night prior this week, this small family business has been bustling with patrons, patrons who’ve made reservations days in advance.

Khamtay Siphandon, proprietor of Bangkok Classic, has struck gold. “I’ve promised that at least half of my nightly profits will go to the local chapter of the Neutral Aide Society to be delivered to those that were so devastated by the çunami.”

Word has gotten out, and not only have the locals from Joseph and Brigham University been attending, but others, including leadership of the LDS church, and the Council themselves.

“I was so honored to see Mr. Hinckley, Mr. Monson and Mr. Faust. Their visit was wonderful.” Mr. Siphandon said, “Not only do I see them, but the Council of Lousianne visits my little restaurant! What wonderful things! Of course, I gave them Pad Thai and dumplings for free…and their tip was most gracious.”

Pad Thai, sticky rice, and the wonderful mango desserts have flown freely, and Mr. Siphandon has raised nearly 20,000L€ for the Neutral Aide Society in the last week. According to local NAS officials, this will be used to purchase lumber in the South-East Asian region as well as food to help to feed and rebuild Banda Aceh and other areas devastated in the disaster.

When asked how he came up with the idea, Siphandon smiled, a twinkle in his eye. “I have to admit, I did it as a marketing ploy…but now, well, with the turnout I’ve had tonight, I’m going to give the whole of my profits for today and tomorrow to the Neutral Aide Society! So long as there is such response, I will keep funneling money to the Neutral Aide Society to help those poor people.” He finished his interview with me by handing me a heaping plate of Pad Thai. “Eat! It’ll do you good!”

Yves Rioux, IBAP Newswire.

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