Late in the evening of May 21, 2009, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center reported that a Tropical Disturbance had developed about 600 mi to the south of Kolkata, India. Over the next few days, the storm grew, until the warning center upgraded it to an official cyclone (or Tropical Storm), which they named Aila.

the damage causedAccording to weather reports, Aila made landfall in southern Bangladesh and eastern India on May 25, 2009 and traveled northwards. As of May 27, 2009, 330 people have been killed by Aila and at least 8,208 more are missing, while about 1 million are homeless.

Even though it is nearly 9,000 miles away, this news hits rather close to home for us here at Tavalon, as one of the main regions devastated by this disaster was Darjeeling, home to the world-famous teas that bear its name. On top of the invaluable human lives that were lost, many of these crops were ruined, leaving the surviving farmers with a smaller yield which will surely bring about even more hardship down the road.

To show even the smallest amount of support for all affected, I encourage my readers to help the farmers by going out and buying some Darjeeling tea. It’s truly amazing tea, so it shouldn’t be too much of a burden!

And for those families who were stricken with loss in this immense tragedy, our deepest condolences – brighter days will hopefully lie ahead.