Hey there! It’s been a while.
Oh have I been busy having fun, which is why you haven’t seen much from me. That’s okay because I’ll be blasting you with all sorts of posts, which may take me a few weeks to finish. I had a fantastic time with Michelle’s visit, which seems so long ago. She landed March 16, and we rarely stopped to rest. I don’t know who had more fun discovering (and in some cases rediscovering) my new home — her, me or the friends who got to play along with us.
The day she left (last Saturday) I headed on over to Sri Lanka for a week, and oh my goodness what a beautiful country that is! I wrote a few blog posts along the way, and just stored them in my iPad. So, tonight I’ll just go ahead and copy and paste my first Sri Lanka post here with some pics, and then my next few posts will fill you in on the rest of Sri Lanka trip, Michelle’s and my Jordan trip, and last, but certainly not least, the rundown of all that we did in the UAE.
Going back to work today was a bit of a shock for me, but luckily it was an easy day. I’m telling you I could totally do the vacation thing full time! Okay, here’s my first words about Sri Lanka:
The eve of Easter Sunday
I am on a rattan lounge chair in front of my villa overlooking a pond filled with lillies. Soon the monkeys will return and drop things on the roof above my bed. I am in one of the most beautiful places on earth, and I’m here without my cameras. My crappy phone will just have to do the trick — let’s see what we can capture.
Today is such a bittersweet day. I was supposed to arrive in Sri Lanka late last night with a dear friend, but luck was not on her side. For whatever reason the booking company screwed up her ticket, and she was not allowed on the plane. Thinking this would get fixed, I checked in her bag, and she held on to my camera bag. Sadly, it’s just not in the cards for her to come. I’d put both the airline and booking company on blast here, but it’s better I don’t because I don’t want to offend the wrong people, and I do so love the life I’m blessed with living on this end of the world.
I’m angry and hurt for my friend, but I know she will get the chance to come here — and I’d be happy to come again with her. So this time around Ashley (my other buddy in crime for this trip) and I will pave the way and ear mark the must dos for the next trip and delete whatever could be missed.
As for today, nothing should be skipped. We hiked the famous mountain that looks like a massive rock. I can’t remember its name, but when I have Internet and more time I’ll google and place the names. Note to those of you who will one day do this be adamant with the young men who want to help you up the steep steps. We kept telling them we could do it ourselves, but they kept saying we work here, and held our arms allegedly pushing us up the stairs. It was awkward because my guy was practically pushing me into Ashley’s bum, but we made it to the plateau where the boys ask you to rest and enjoy the view, before resuming the climb.
[Holy shit it’s raining flowers right now! flowers and twigs. freaking fairytalish awesome. And oh shit I just heard something big plunk into pond — um, they have monitor lizards here, so I’m rushing back into our little villa to finish this]
Okay, back to the pesky boys. While we’re ‘resting’ and taking in the view, the ‘helpers’ tell us they can help us up the rest of the mountain. How is beyond me because you basically climb a bunch of stairs. Unless they plan on carrying me on their back, there’s not much help they can do. Anyway, we politely say no, and then the bid for money begins. “1000 rupies for our work.” We didn’t give them that, but after haggling (even though we didn’t think we should pay) we gave them some bucks from 3 countries — they seemed happy with that.
After the climb we were treated to a village tour. First we got in an ox cart, where our bull Sewdoo (which means white, and is also a term of endearment for girlfriends —- um, Joe if you’re reading don’t ever call me your white ox), pulled us to a lake. Then we climbed aboard a a small pontoon boat where two men paddled us through lillies and trees, our guide excitedly pointing out local birds. The men made necklaces out of lilly flowers for us and explained the medicinal uses for their seeds. Then we were treated to a lesson by three lovely women who cooked us an amazing meal, which we ate in a hut made of clay and ox dung (no smell I swear). The food was so good — even the thing made out of leaves. The curried pumpkin was my favorite — oh and this coconut, chilli thing, oh and the little, fat (Aaron would call them choad) bannanas. Oh and we also ate salted pineapple — can you tell I really loved that meal.
After that it was pool time while the monkeys played, a nap and then dinner and a walk. Pretty amazing day. Tomorrow we drive to Kandy and visit some temples along the way.
this is actually another flight of stairs at the top. At the top of this is where a king who had 500 wives lived. He would climb to the bottom to be with them. Apparently, the women bathed and hung out at the pools at the bottom just waiting for their exhausted husband.
washing our hands before the big meal.