Leaving on a jetplane

Trip Start Dec 28, 2007
Trip End Jan 25, 2008

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Flag of Sri Lanka  ,
Wednesday, January 23, 2008

...don't know when I'll be back again. But I would like to come back -- hopefully to a peaceful island. Because the place has everything -- an astonishing and ancient culture, astonishing and diverse wildlife -- spotted a monitor lizard on the way into the new town and I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to sleep without the sound of geckos and crickets. It also of course has a bloody and seemingly intractable civil war. I got talking to an older gent by the dutch rampart in Matara -- (the dutch wanted to build a fort but ran out of money so ended up building a wall -- the shortcomings of this cunning plan became apparent after an uprising when the Kanyan kings simply lobbed cannonballs over the wall!!) about the state of the world, about Iraq and about Sri Lanka and what I thought of the place -- its a subject that gets entered into frequently "How are you like our country?" however when you get to the subject of the insurgency there seems to be a bit of blindspot and some rather unbuddhist thinking in evidence. Especially when you see the pluralist society up in the hills where Tamil tea workers and muslims, christians and buddhists all co-exist
Anyhoo I'm in Galle at the moment -- after a long day coming down from Nuwara Eliya in the mountains and damn its hot. The fort --which protected the old town from the tsunami is a lovely wandering spot filled with dutch era buildings -- and jewellers ready to part tourists from cash...or travellers cheques....or credit cards! Tomorrow I head through rather than to Colombo and overnight in Negombo near to the airport.
So the highlights? Elephant watching, The slog up Sri Pada/Adams Peak to watch the dawn, The warmth of the people everywhere, the walks around Haputale, The Bo tree at Anuradhapura -- but the whole experience has been a joy. I'm gutted that I didnt travel to Sri Lanka before India -- I dont think that you could find a more gentle and laidback introduction to South Asia.
Like the man said....I'll be back...

Hasta la vista

Oh and happy nearly birthday ravey davey!!
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