Full moon public holiday #1

Trip Start Aug 11, 2013
Trip End Sep 17, 2013

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Where I stayed
What I did
Flamingo restaurant, Chilli bar, Beach

Flag of Sri Lanka  , Southern,
Thursday, August 22, 2013

Following my very adventurous jungle holiday, I had just one day working before the public holiday of the full moon (which they have every month). To celebrate, we travelled from Mahamagama by bus to Galle (2hours away) and then got a ten minute tuctuc to the BEAUTIFUL resort of Unawatuna. It is literally picture perfect. 

We got there around 10pm and dumped our bags to go and find a restaurant for some dinner. The guesthouse we stayed in was lovely- clean, with clean sheets and a decent mosquito net - and the owner was like a Sri Lankan Mr.Bean in his sarong with his belly/hips always angled slightly fowards. He was funny :)

We found a place to eat on the seafront which didn't serve curry, so I got a good fix of more western food (and drink!). I had calamarie with salad and potatoe wedges...and a mojito..and beer...and 3 G&T's. Okay let'sjust say by 1am I was doind tequila shots with 3 volunteer coordinators and the Major of Colombo's son! He also somehow produced a bottle of grey goose and some cranberry juice - felt like I was in Derby for a minute!
We had great talks with the majors son about places to visit in Sri Lanka and also about the properties and beaches he owns and the great charity and community work he and his father conduct. A very interesting person to meet!

We returned to Silva Guesthouse around 4am and had about 3 hours sleep before the sounds of the small town woke us. So we stumbled down the main road to have breakfast - a king coconut (always wanted to drink from one - tasted like the water you peel your potatoes into) and a piece of cheese on toast! Pretty heavenly!
The rest of the day was spent shopping, sunbathing and swimming in the fantastic blue sea. I have never seen a place so tropical and beautiful. The people are also so kind and friendly - not as pushy as I imagined (with regards to selling things). I got some tea from the best tea shop in sri lanka (every year since 2008!!) and also a lovely leather bag and some tops which were made by a local women in the back of her shop/her front room!

The journey back was a little more tiring, and by the time we got to our homestay at 8:30 I was ready for bed!! I ate my dinner of rice and spiced pumpkin and went to bed.

Was up at 7 for my first bus of the day today (averaging about 8 buses a day - which in this heat can be very tiring and frustrating!). Wednesday are pretty exhausting for me too, since I am at HWH in the morning and NIMH in the afternoon, whereas when you teach part of the day you are far less....run into the ground!
At the HWH I was on the acute ward, the most severe patients and the worst conditions. I was surprised by how quickly my surroundings stopped bothering me though, well except for the headlice, I remained vigilent in making sure they didn't get near me..
We arranged some seats in a circle - outside the building of the ward - and did some singing and bracelet making. One women there is called Bridget and knows some english and LOVES to sing... her repetoire includes: jingle bells, twinkle twinkle, happy birthday and now - insy winsy spider! She is hilarious - when she finishes singing I kept saying 'lasanai, hondai' (beautiful, good) and she says in english 'your teeth are beautiful, you make me happiness and you are english and lovely' hahaha she's funny..

After HWH I got the bus to NIMH and got some lunch in the local town (well, one road) before going to the womens forensic ward again. It was a strange sort of session since the women had all just recieved their medication follwing lunch. So they were sleepy, tired, some flat out sedated. I did manage to challenge one women to a game of badminton though. She won. I let her....honest! 
After that I did some arts and crafts with other ladies and painted some of their nails which they loved. The interaction with us is all they get so although they were groggy they were still happy to see us.

So that's my update really!
And Clazzzyyyyy I'm so sorry for forgetting you - you are never far from my thoughts and I'm counting down the days until I come to Toulouse!! Not long now!! Get that dissertation submitted!

Hope all is well at home.. Teaching 18-40 year old men tomorrow, then youth teaching, then a conference in Colombo 7-9. Going to be so tired it's always so full on here!!

I'm going home for dinner now - actually looking forward to some curry!
Popping into the supermarket on my way back for some watermelon and passion fruit - the fruit here is to die for but we don't get given it often at home.
I'm glad to say I'm comfortable to walk around Ethul Kotte (our home town) alone, expect for after dark! It gets dark at 6:30 so I better get a move on.

Byeeeeee xx
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Romy on

GRACE!!!! It sounds like you are having and amazing time! I'm so glad you're enjoying it! Missing you heaps back home! Can't wait to see pics and hear stories when you are back! Make the most of it while you're there and stay safe! Look forward to your next instalment!

Lots of love


Mum on

Hi grace sounds like you're having a brilliant time and certainly making the most of every minute. As you say you have got used to some of the conditions already but it doesn't make it any easier I guess. You will have loads to tell us when you get back I can't wait to hear all about it and see your photos. You seem to have met some lovely people- this mayors son sounds interesting- how old is he? The food sounds nice have you got used to the spiciness now? Your description of the beach sounded fantastic- perhaps you could go back there at the end of your visit? Been into school today- felt weird like I didn't belong! Men's coming for tea tonight. Jane and I are off to Stratford for the day tomorrow and to see As you Like It at the theatre so looking forward to that. We go to the Lake District on Friday until next Wednesday- taking caravan but megs staying here with Bonnie.
Well sweetheart look after yourself will try and speak to you. Tomorrow eve about 6 pm our time if that's ok? Love you and miss you loads,
Mum and dad xxxxxxxxxx

Naomi on

Oh my god I didn't even realise we could comment! How fun!!!
Sounds like the most incredible experience, except the little creatures and sweaty conditions. Can't wait to here more and put faces to all these names and places. Enjoy every minute! Love you millions! Xxxx

Megan on

Hello Ello Ello... I know we have communicated through text but this is cheaper ;) haha.. I love your updates!! Genuinely look forward to the next one :) it sounds so amazing out there, a once in a life time journey.. Your working very hard and making lots of less fortunate people smile & we are all so proud of you! Missing you a lot lot lot though :( !!! Keep enjoying every minute babe, stay safe and take lots of photos!! Love you always xxxxxx

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