Moby Richard

Trip Start Mar 17, 2010
Trip End Jul 31, 2010

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Where I stayed
Mandara Resort

Flag of Sri Lanka  , Southern,
Monday, April 19, 2010

Saw 3 more blue whales today which surely now makes us experts in the field of blue whale behaviour ­ although the weather wasn't quite so calm so spotting them required more effort as you can see the crew hard at work in the pictures. Sal is now going to look for funding for her PhD in whale poo formations next year while Rich sells his photos to fund the beach side lifestyle and runs a modest guesthouse, specialising in 'not by the hour rooms' and 'actually clean rooms'.

The afternoon was an interesting experience in Galle, where we took a romantic (well... kind of: we aren't allowed to hold hands or make any public displays of affection here, without an umbrella or newspaper (more about that in a minute)) walk along the walls of the old Dutch Fort. The newer part of town that wasn't fortified was swept away in the Tsunami in 2004 and the tide marks 10 metres up the sides of the buildings have only just been painted out. By some strange quirk of fate, the large Buddha statues that sit in the centre of the town were not washed away with everything else! The locals believe it was a sign...

So about the umbrellas and newspapers then: as you may have guessed by now, Sinhalese people are pretty modest and are very strict about things that westerners take for granted. You can't date someone without a chaperone and certainly no intimate contact before the wedding date is registered! Of course, where there is a will there's a way and for young people it involves, as we witnessed, taking an umbrella and sitting behind it in one of the many cubby-holes in the walls around the Old Town for a cheeky kiss and cuddle. Newspapers with peep-holes can be utilised by old men spying on the aforementioned couples!
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