Is it Christmas already?

Trip Start May 21, 2007
Trip End Aug 08, 2015

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Flag of Sri Lanka  ,
Saturday, September 29, 2007

It's been a busy and tiring few days. Wednesday was Poya, which is a Buddhist festival. It happens every month when there's a full moon so everywhere, including the school, are closed for the day. On Tuesday after school we traveled up to Colombo as we were joining Ronali and Heshan's church outing on Wednesday. The driver got slightly lost toward the end so we didn't arrive at the hotel until near 11pm. Met Andy, the new builder, in the lobby, then it was off to bed for literally a few hours, as we were being picked up at 445am!
The bus heading off at 5am, with our first stop being at an elephant orphanage. It's a big park where abandoned or hurt elephants are allowed to roam freely and are taken care off. There was 1 elephant who was blind, another who had a limp leg after being hunted for it's tusks and then 1 with an ear missing. I got to touch an elephant, which for the record are quite hairy. At certain time each day, they are taken to a nearby lake to bath. It was amazing seeing them being led down the street to the lake and then about 30 elephants are splashing about in the water.
After stopping at 2 temples, we headed for Kandy. It's such a picturesque town, with a huge lake right in the center. We stopped at a lake just outside of Kandy for lunch and a dip in the water if you wanted. I just watched as I knew I would come out soaked, even if I just went for a paddle. On the way back, we stopped off at Trinity College (Kandy not Dublin) to see a church which is used for a service everyday. Most surreal moment was on the bus back to Colombo when everyone started to sing Christmas songs! Jingle bells, Rudolph the red nosed reindeer, Joy to the world - they all made an appearance! Sure it's less than 3 months now!
It was a really good day and we were back at the hotel again for only a few hours as we left again at 5am to get back for school starting. So with about 8 hours sleep over 2 days and many miles in buses, you can probably tell we were all on fine form yesterday! To be fair, it wasn't that bad, but I was pleased to see my bed last night!
Today I was only with the Preschoolers for the first hour as I had to help out with the widow's scheme. Smile has a widow sponsorship scheme and with the money collected, they give widow's food parcels. Today was the first of a new monthly meeting of the widows. There are 12 altogether and they came her in the morning for games, a talk, lunch and then to collect their food parcels. Also next month they are starting to run patchwork and sewing classes for them meaning they'll be able to make and sell goods. It was a good atmosphere as they played musical statues and pictionary! It was something different for them-a chance to have a bit of fun, but also learn something as well.
So what does the weekend have in store? I think rest and relaxation in preparation for our final month!
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