Skip to main content

Time to say bye, already???

..was the feeling that hit us on the morning of our last day in SL. No more of the ready-made breakfast to greet us on the table, no more of getting ready with a song on the lips, no more of packing bags with ready-to-eat food and camera and no more of crashing down to sleep with a weary but fulfilled feeling. Vacation does more harm than good in some ways. But who cares??? I am already ready for the next ;-)

We hounded a few shops the previous evening in the greed to grab some smart outfits but I was quite disappointed. The ones that fitted my taste were not exactly worth the tag price. I might as well buy the stuff here. It wasn't all that exclusive too. We were probably looking for the right things at the wrong place too. However it didn't matter. We got some books and toys for R in the end.

Pictures from the previous evening:






The twin tower-world trade centre





The White House

We took a tuk-tuk the next day to the national museum. Chatting with the local people in a foreign place gives you the true feel of the place. This guy could speak broken English and was most happy to chat with us. He (read an average Sri Lankan) loved Bollywood films and music. An enthusiastic "oh yes Hindi movies! SRK, Suniel Shetty, Akshay Kumar!" was the first response to our question. Well..anyway..
I mentioned earlier that SL is a cricket crazed nation. The notion rubbed in further while talking to this young chap. He spoke passionately about his favourite SL cricketers and even had the IPL song as his mobile ring tone. He persuaded us to book him for the return journey to the hotel, offering to wait for us till we finished with our museum tour, lunch and a little shopping if time permitted. We were already aware of the average tariff for the round trip. He was asking for a little more and good-naturedly chided us when we haggled a bit.( sigh! some things are so eerily familiar) The only difference being, it was a few hundreds there while it could be a few tens here. Money sure has even lesser value there.


The national museum




R was least cooperative during the museum tour. Actually, I really didn't expect him to quietly tag along with us while we appreciated ancient history. So, we took turns (rather I let the husband do a more detailed tour while I handled R in the lawn outside) in entertaining R. We then went to House of Fashion, a multi-storey shopping store to try our last chance at clothes-shopping. It was a Friday yet it looked as though the entire Colombo was there. Humongous crowd thronging every section equally, the place so maddening that we made a quick retreat and decided to have lunch instead. We went to an Indian restaurant, had a south Indian fare that had more spice than taste and returned to our hotel where our driver was waiting to take us to the airport. We had our first experience that day of the SL traffic with roads chock-a-block with vehicles. Still, none of the incessant honking that you'd find here in a similar scenario.

We came to SL in wake of the unpleasant incident of our blessed government voting against our sole friendly neighbour. Yet, everywhere we went, we found that India and people from India commanded respect and warmth from people there.
Happy and satisfied is how I would I felt as we bade farewell to Sri Lanka. Like someone remarked at the turtle farm- 'India, Sri Lanka- same country, same colour' :-) While it is true in some ways, I'd definitely like to visit this place again in future when I hope the country would've made much economic progress and yet retained all the good aspects that we got to see and experience. Here's wishing our neighbour the very best!

Comments

  1. Hmm, I actually feel mighty relieved when a holiday ends! Yes, definitely there are some pluses like not having to cook & other chores but home is all I can think of! Great series, Uma, enjoyed reading your travelogue!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yeah..the true spirit of vacation can be enjoyed only when you have a home to go back to :-)
      Thanks a lot, Vibha! glad you liked it.

      Delete
  2. that's a lovely lovely post. yup, get ready for ur next trip and share your experience with us, and hopefully you ll have a fulfilling shopping spree. pics are amazing!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you so much, Debajyoti..vacations are always welcome, right? :-)
      and, welcome here :-)

      Delete
  3. loved loved loved narrative...every one of it :) errr...I love the name tuk-tuk..better than a rick na

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much,RM!!
      Even I liked the name..I guess the six-seaters in Pune are called tuk-tuk too.

      Delete
  4. Wonderful tour Uma.. SL tour has ended not just for you, but for your readers as well!! I would definitely like to visit SL sometime..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Radhika! :-)
      I am so glad you all have been able to relate to what was written here. You should visit SL, sometime, surely!

      Delete
  5. Lovely narrative, uma. Thanks for sharing your holiday with us! The cities esp Colombo look so clean. Some friends went to SL many years ago and were raving about the cheap clothes there...I suppose that's not the case any more....I do find we can get equally good stuff in india nowadays.
    Did R get tired after the vacation or was he ok? I find my kids start flagging a bit after the first week.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Aparna for being a part of this series. It would not have been so much fun putting the experience on paper if not for readers like you who were as much a part of it.
      Yeah, agree about the clothes part. R was thankfully all OK during and after the trip. That was a major plus, else the trip could have been ruined.

      Delete
  6. What a lovely travelogue Uma, you have a knack of putting together all the points really well - I for one got to know a lot about SL and hope to visit it sometime soon with so much information now available for me source :). Great that you planned and had such a lovely vacation, with a toddler along no less :).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. aah..and you've a knack of paying sweet compliments..not that am complaining :-))) thank you soo much. You should plan a trip sometime now.

      Delete
  7. wow lovely trip and more lovely was the way you took your readers with you through this post
    i have been to Kandy and Colombo looks equally beautiful. great pics

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey thanks Sujatha..that's a lovely comment! :-)
      Welcome here. Hope to see you around :-)

      Delete
  8. Only when I started reading ur SL write-up did I realise how long it was since I last turned up here......and boy am I glad;-D. I got to read the entire page in one go and have to tell u that u have related everything to us really well....the details, pictures, the little insignificant yet interesting[to us]facts; I esp enjoyed reading about the turtles, the mini worlds end, the tender coconut details:-). U knw we get our grated coconuts here in Dubai from SL[no coconut trees in Dubai u see;-D].....my in-laws used to complain tht it was not very sweet and as good as the Indian one but I found them ok;-P.

    Great job Uma[If blogger had a thumbs-up emotion I'd have placed it here:-)]!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. missed you here Nancy! I am so glad you liked going through the series.
      Well the compliments are surely going to my head..:-))

      Delete

Post a Comment

Would love to hear from you :-)
Also, please click the subscribe by Email link below the comment form to get follow-up comments to your inbox..

Popular posts from this blog

Awaiting colours of change

It's the morning rush hour. In between flipping the dosa on the steaming pan, I scurry towards the bathroom door, impatiently asking R to hurry up and finish his bath. I scamper back to the kitchen to finish packing the lunch boxes, feeling the pressure of the husband's temporary absence which would have otherwise let me concentrate on just one part of the early-hour circus at home.

"Amma, I'm done. Please get the towel," screamed R into the empty room. Finally, I mutter and stride back to help him get dressed for school. My hands work quickly in tandem, patting him dry and squeezing the moisturizer into my palms when I notice R's. They have a flaky white colour to them, the one that comes with the skin being in contact with excessive foam and water. I apply a generous dose of the creamy lotion over them as I gently rebuke R for using so much soap.

"But, I want my skin to be light. I like light skin not dark" he quips, in almost a matter-of-fact to…

Rotting humanity

Doc, there's an emergency!

The breaking news flashes the brutal carnage. Images and voices float in my mind as I drive in manic speed to the hospital.

Of sirens blazing. Of toys and limbs lying scattered on a carpet of red and brown.

Oxygen! I scream. Pump, harder.

Doc, there's no pulse.

Shoulders slump.

I witness grief fuse into flames that rise up collectively at the mass funeral. The ashes fall lightly on me.

Will the stench of hate ever recede?

*** Written for a prompt at

The wedding

Holding hands under the inky blue bejeweled canopy, they swore allegiance to each other. Bedecked in a brown shimmery, the translucent veil flowing away from her coy face, she looked up nervously at him. He replied with an imperceptible nod that spoke volumes of quiet reassurance.

Family and friends had gathered for the ceremony that would bind the two lovers for life. The atmosphere was electrifying and the air abuzz with each of them signaling to the other in a frenzy of activity. A huddle in here, a huddle there, some grouping for a light tete-a-tete, some to discuss an important ritual.

The younger lot broke away from the crowd, not entirely connecting with the significance of the gathering, their individual frames dotting the arena like lost stars.

At the precise moment that would signify the sacred union, the chief called for everyone's unwavering attention. The scattered swarm, even the ones that had strayed, converged obediently towards the altar. Each member of the audie…