Never knew I could cycle that much :-)

Trip Start Sep 21, 2009
Trip End Apr 28, 2010

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Flag of Sri Lanka  , North Central,
Friday, November 6, 2009

I got up late morning again - I am getting a little bit lazy at the moment!! I realised that they are actually quite a lot of things to visit around but once again it is temple and things like that. Don't get me wrong I like getting a bit of history and culture about where I am going but every temple I have been to is essentially the same to me.

What I really like when I am travelling is mixing in with the local population as much as I can. It is sometimes very difficult to converse but just walking around and observing what is happening gives you a bit of an understanding as to how people live. Visiting is good but if you come to Fougeres (my home town in Brittany) and visit the castle, this is not going to tell you how I, as a local, live my life.

Today, I wanted to have a look around and possibly hire a Tuctuc to do some actual "visiting". After having had a chat with one of the managers at the hotel, I decided to rent a bike which would work out so much cheaper.

When I went to get the bike though, I realised there was bit of a misunderstanding!! They meant a push bike not a motor bike. After a split second of hesitation, I thought it could be fun to cycle around - And it really was!

First I went around the town with the intention of going to the “old town” but when I got there I was told you could not take the bike and people were already starting to approach me to be a guide and be able to park the bike. To be honest, I just could not be bother with people hassling me today so I just decided to cycle away and go into the countryside.

It was absolutely brilliant, I really enjoyed it! I was able to catch glimpses of people everyday routine right in the middle of the countryside. People were very friendly to me and it was such a pleasant ride. I cycled for almost 4 hours and saw some beautiful scenery. They were a lot of school kids either cycling, walking or on the school bus and once again I was the attraction. Kids were trying their English - it was really funny!

At one point though, this guy on a bike stopped next to me and asked me where I was going. As I knew he wanted something back from me, I just told him that I didn’t need any help but thanked him anyway. He went into a bit of a strop telling me “this is my country, you from Europe” - I could not really understand what he was on about but I could tell he wasn’t telling he was in love with me :-). He started to piss me off a little bit actually so I asked him if there was a problem but he said no and rode off.

A few moments later, I saw him again. He stopped and wanted me to come and speak to him. He explained he loved Europe and that, from what I could understood, was not too happy at the fact I’d told him I did not need any help. He actually thought I was English!

In any case, I told him I was not trying to be rude but that I get approached every 5mins by people who just want money from me. He said to me he did not want any money but just wanted to make sure I knew where I was going. We started chatting for a few minutes and all of a sudden he pulled this wooden Elephant out of his bag. He was no different; he simply wanted to sell me his craft.

Don’t get me wrong, these guys are trying to make a living and I completely understand that but it difficult to say polite all the time when you get approached all the time - I do try as much as I could though!

On the way back to the hotel, I had to stop as a snake was just crossing the road in front of me. Snake - here is an animal I’d not thought about before and I must admit was too keen on knowing there were such big snakes in the area!! I really enjoyed riding amongst the monkeys though - they are extremely funny!

I am now back the hotel and the rain as started as usual every evening :-( but it’s all good. I am just going to back into town get myself some cigarettes and a couple of drinks :-).
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