Howard Arfin is a volunteer and international delegate for the Canadian Red Cross.
He has been helping bury the dead and supplying aid for survivors on the Indonesian island of Sumatra. He reports on his experiences in the second of a series of occasional diary entries for the BBC News website.
12 January 2005
Sitting bolt upright in the middle of the night as the earth rumbles below me
has become a regular routine here.
Signs of death and destruction are visible everywhere in Aceh
For me, it's a scary novelty, but I can't begin to imagine the panic and fear these aftershocks must evoke in the survivors of the great quake - the grinding of our planet's tectonic plates that generated the killing monster wave of 26 December.
And what miserable conditions have been left in the tsunami's wake.
Raining down upon the devastation, the monsoon season is upon us and many people are now living under makeshift tarpaulins in mud and squalor, or in the ruins of homes not swept away by a roaring wall of water.
We're here as the International Red Cross Federation supporting the emergency relief operations of Palang Merah Indonesia (PMI), the Red Cross national society in this country.
PMI is doing a commendable job getting basic relief supplies - food, water, hygiene kits - to these desperate people left with nothing.
But the despair is deep among these "beneficiaries" as we call them in our humanitarian work.
The vacant look in the eyes of children still haunts aid workers
Decent everyday folk are left with no homes, no jobs, no apparent prospects for the future, and struggling with the grief of lost family members.
Our disaster response efforts are definitely getting results.
We've got a steady run of helicopter missions flying down the north-western coast with our relief experts doing advance assessments.
We've started to use small boats to get basic relief supplies into stranded communities that are inaccessible by road.
Three of our mobile water purification plants are supplying safe drinking water to thousands of survivors along both coasts.
We're delivering emergency health services to hundreds of people out of tents at Meulaboh and Teunom.
So we're doing the big job that our generous supporters expect us to do, although the logistical barriers are far from overcome.
Those lucky to have escaped death on that terrible day are scattered in groups across thousands of square kilometres.
But what continues to haunt me is the vacant look in the eyes of children who cannot comprehend what has happened to them.
We are not hearing any laughter.