Sunday, June 26, 2016

Last days in Sri Lanka

I have been very busy with the garden. Since I only have time on weekends, I have been spending most of the day outside trying to get everything under control. The garden got weed-choked with our 2 years in China. Last summer, I was able to clear and keep clear a number of beds but of course, what I didn't get under control still went to seed and re-seeded it self. Plus I was unable to keep things weeded through the summer due to my business travels so while it helped, it was not as good a job as it should have been.

This spring, we've managed to get most of it weeded and I plan to try and keep everything weeded through the fall to prevent another year of weed-choked beds.

So I haven't got much of anything done. I've been combing and spinning the Gotland fleece I got last Rhinebeck and it is almost done. But it is very boring. Just grey. I comb a batch and spin and then comb another batch. This way I don't over-tax my wrists and arms with combing.

And here, finally, is the last installment of the Sri Lanka trip. After this I will be back to my usual topics of spinning, knitting, etc.

Our next to last day in Sri Lanka began in Yala NP and ended in the port city of Galle. We drove along the southern coast and there were many beautiful views out over the Indian ocean as we drove along.
 We stopped here to see the stick fishermen. They came up with this way of fishing because they have to get clear of the rocks at the edge of the shore. These days, i wonder how much fish they catch and how much they are there for tourists because they are barely clear of the rocks.

 Our destination was Galle, a Portuguese fort at the south-western end of Sri Lanka. The fort has been preserved with all the buildings within it having historical landmark status. This is the interior wall of the fort - the one that faces the town.
 The fort has good views over the water, which is needed for defensive purposes. This is a view from the landward wall.

 The building inside the fort definitely have that colonial feel. It is quiet for now. As we were leaving, the schools let out and it was pretty crazy and noisy with the traffic.

 This is the seaward side.

 The Indian ocean is a gorgeous color.

 After we wandered through the fort, we went to our hotel which was right on the beach. I couldn't have picked a better spot to spend our last night.
It was built around an old lighthouse, I think.

 We spent most of the evening camped out on the lawn watching the sun set.

 The best colors are after the sun actually sets.
 The next morning, we set off for Colombo. It was our last day and we flew out in the evening. Now we were driving along the south-western coast of Sri Lanka, heading north. Surfing is very popular here. This is also where the tsunami hit at its worst. If you have seen the youtube video of the train being washed away, it was from around here. Our first stop was at the tsunami memorial.
We also drove by one of the more important Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka but we didn't stop. 

Our driver took us on a city tour of Colombo. It looks like any other city! But there were a few differences. There are Hindu temples.
 A Dutch hospital that is now turned into a restaurant complex. We stopped here to cool off and get some lunch.

There was a beautiful golden Buddha as we drove around.
I think this is the seat of the government.
 Then we drove to the Independence Square. It is a national monument surrounded by parks and other buildings. The monument is the Independence Memorial Hall.
 Inside are traditionally carved columns with scenes depicting Sri Lankan history.
 You can't really see the vignettes as they are on those plaques. The columns reminded me of the hall in the Temple of the Golden Tooth at Kandy.
 It is surrounded by parks on most sides. That building over there is a colonial building that is now a mall.
 We sat on the steps of the hall and watched a school sports day in a field across the street. There were heats and races.

And then we left for the airport and headed back to Chennai.

I'll try and get in a catch-up post on what I've been up to spinning and knitting-wise in the next day.

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