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Farewell words and pictures


View Sri Lanka 2017 Summer on FierceOrc's travel map.

A country of extreme poverty with oxen-drawn wagons and the most basic of bicycles and bicycle repair shops to match, but widespread cellphone ownership and coverage on the most distant of mountain tops. All over the place, new buildings are constructed with fancy glass facades, but most of them seem to be in a permanently unfinished state with all floors above the second generally missing. Endless miles of road where every other building is either a little shop or has a vegetable stall in front of it selling homegrown produce, and where every fourth building is a temple, a stupa or a Buddha statue, varying in size from minuscule to giant, not a few of them with cheerfully flashing lights. There is agricultural transportation equipment on the road that I remember from when I was young but have not seen in over 50 years. Along with Singalese and Tamil, English is the third official language, but despite a literacy rate of 97% and English classes and international schools advertised all over the place, young people in the hospitality sector barely understand or speak a word of it; and it’s not just them. Open-air butchers sell their wares alongside satellite dishes. A “hotel” is not necessarily a place where you can spend the night, but around popular attractions everyone appears to be letting rooms, AC and non-AC. The last thing you can get at a “wine store” is wine. The photoshoots for weddings (there are lots of them on a daily basis) start at 6.30 am and a wedding is not complete until the “homecoming” after the honeymoon - a big feast, as I understand it. A hammer and a horn get most of the work done.

They’re betting on tourism now, with plenty of hotels being built. A second international airport was opened in the south a couple of years ago. Innumerable gem stores will be pleased to draw more people in. It’ll be interesting to see where the country is ten or fifteen years from now. It won’t be me doing the seeing, but if you’re going, keep me posted.

Anyway, here's a couple of videos:

https://youtu.be/3emZzRJBpJw
(Elephants at their watering place)

https://youtu.be/WksgxJ4Kr1c
(Bandarawela, street life)

https://youtu.be/gFA360HaVXk
Beruwala, wedding

And here's a couple of pictures I didn't get around to posting before.

Road signage - 1

Road signage - 1


Road signage - 2

Road signage - 2

Sigiriya, Lion Rock. In reality much more impressive than here.

Sigiriya, Lion Rock. In reality much more impressive than here.

Sigiriya, Lion Rock. The white line in the distance is a big Buddha.

Sigiriya, Lion Rock. The white line in the distance is a big Buddha.

Sigiriya, Lion Rock. The guy in front is our guide, who thought I was taking a photo of him.

Sigiriya, Lion Rock. The guy in front is our guide, who thought I was taking a photo of him.

Yala National Park

Yala National Park

Big Buddha - 1

Big Buddha - 1


Big Buddha -2

Big Buddha -2

Roadside Buddha - 1

Roadside Buddha - 1

Middle-of-the-Roadside Buddha - 1

Middle-of-the-Roadside Buddha - 1


Middle-of-the-Roadside Buddha - 2

Middle-of-the-Roadside Buddha - 2

Posted by FierceOrc 04:46 Archived in Sri Lanka Tagged temples tea sri_lanka windlife

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Comments

Based on your visit I am crossing Sri Lanka off my list of places to visit - although truth be told it was never on my list.

by Tim

Travelling is all about getting out of your comfort zone. It was good.

by FierceOrc

You're going with the "Travel makes you wiser, but less happy." view of the experience?

If I had more vacation I might feel the same, but you know Americans and our horrible vacation time allowance.

by Tim

More like: the more you travel wide and far, the less you can go back home again.

by FierceOrc

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