by Levison Wood
At first, the fishermen made use of the wreckage of aircraft and damaged boats left behind after the conflict to gain a vantage spot over swarming fish, later progressing to the use of these stilts. However, after the tsunami of 2004, many of the shorelines were altered and this way of fishing became more difficult.
Nowadays, many of the fishermen continue to eke out a living by charging tourists to take photos, but these men were the real deal and didn't mind me hanging out with them for a few hours at dawn near to Cape Weligama. I watched one elderly man sit for four hours perched on his stilt and returned with a bucketful of fish for his family.