Lanka Time

Trip Start Apr 30, 2006
Trip End Mar 25, 2007

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Flag of Sri Lanka  ,
Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Why did we go to Sri Lanka?  ... a little background...  In the year 715, the Island then known as Celyon saw a great king emerge.  His kingdom was passed down from generation to generation and saw relative harmony and peace for almost 1,100 years... the longest single dynasty of any nation in recorded history.  Many things we currently take for granted in everyday life originated from this dynasty including hop-scotch, crocheting, mashed potatoes and the exclamation point.  In the year 1815 the long lasting dynasty came to a bitter end as the British concurred the last stronghold of the island - Kandy.  The final king was expelled and with him the long-lasting dynasty concluded.  The expelled king sought refuge in America... This King's name was Jamatha Lanka.   Myles' great great great grandfather!  The British changed the name of the country from Celyon to Sri Lanka, born out of the King's name - Sir Lanka.  Sir Lanka entered the U.S.A. through Ellis Island and like so many before him, his name was altered and upon crossing the Hudson river in NYC, he became James Lank.  Myles' full name, for those who don't know, is Myles James Lank.

This, of course, is complete nonsense... however, it was really really fun seeing Myles' last name on every single sign throughout the country.  Lanka this and Lanka that.... We saw everything from Lanka Lubricants to Lanka Women (magazine) to Lanka Fuel, to Lankem Rubber Products.

Anyway... Sri Lanka: Amazing.  It is the size of San Diego and Orange county put together (or Ireland for our Euro friends) and for its size, the country packs a huge punch.  It has the water of the Caribbean, the surf of Costa Rica, 7500 foot, cool, tea-lined mountains with great white water rafting, numerous game parks (that rival Africa) and the food and culture competes with India... but with less people.  It's dirt cheap and everyone speaks English.

Dreamy, huh?  And guess what?  Right now there are no tourists!  Literally,  no one!  However, that's the catch... Sri Lanka is neck deep in a 30 year violent civil war and this (for some strange reason) deters a few people from making the 25 hour flight from the U.S. amist the war, on December 26th, 2004 the tsunami hit Sri Lanka hard, killing more than 30,000 people and destroying the coastal communities... The war and the Tsunami puts a twist on visiting the small Island.

We spent almost 3 weeks in Sri Lanka visiting the coast and the mountains.  This entry focuses on the coastal regions.  We spent our time at the beach snorkeling, swimming, surfing and talking with people about the tsunami... every person has a very close, personal story about the set of waves.  Extremely sad.  Enjoy the log.... 
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