Galle and Mirissa

Trip Start Sep 30, 2012
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Sri Lanka  ,
Thursday, October 4, 2012

Having escaped from Jar-Ela, I went into Colombo to catch the Train to Galle in the South. The minute I got out of the taxi, I realised how under prepared I was for the sheer heat, noise and stress of downtown Colombo with 20kg of weight on my shoulders. Bell-ends appeared within seconds to hustle, and I felt painfully concious of my bumbling foreign ways. The  Once on the platform, however, I calmed down and realised that the train system was pretty straight forward. I met a guy from Beijing who was happy for us to travel togther to Galle. 

Once the train got moving, I finally felt happy for the first time in Sri Lanka. The countryside is amazing, hands down the most beautiful country that I have ever been to. Swathes of green, dotted with shacks and the occasional viscous Dutch canal running under the trainline. Coconut trees are everywhere, and Sri Lankans wave to you and shout 'How do you do?' constantly. Colombo quickly became a distant shitty memory.

Once in Galle, I immediately got touted by a tout and ended up in a mediocre guesthouse where I was charged foreign prices. Don't ever got to 'Fort Fifty' in Galle. All the staff are trying to milk you for cash. However, I met a girl from Beijing who was happy to let me tag along with her, and she taught to find places to stay for 1000 rupees. That's $6, not bad! Galle itself is a typical Sri Lankan city. However, it's old town is a walled fort filled with historic Dutch and British buildings, a temple, mosque, two churches. I've started to appreciate that the religions here blur a bit. The buddhist temples have pictures of Hindu gods, the churches display priests outside as if they were different manifestations of God. There is a lot of cross cultural fertilisation. Anyway, after spending a morning getting followed by the world's most obese Tuk-tuk driver (who claimed I had killed his kids or something by refusing to take his slack tour), I got onto a bus from Galle with Uma, the Chinese girl. The bus was unairconditioned, and blared out Reggae. At the front of the dash was a technicolour display of various incarnations of the Buddha. As we pulled into Mirissa, the bus conductor was happy enough to get off and help us unload our luggage. The bus then promptly drove off without the conductor, who screamed and shouted to no avail. Such a comical scene filled me with joy. I hope that dude got home alright.

Mirissa is paradise. A long empty beach, almost no tourists, almost no development. Just a few guest houses. I'm not sure how long to stay here, but I could easily blow another day or two here, eating seafood and $1 curries and  drinking coconuts. Yesterday day, while getting lost in some country lane, some Sri Lankan ran out of his house begging me to pop in. So in I go, into some poor fishermans shack to talk about general smalltalk and cricket while his son translated. I cannot ever imagine the English doing the same.

A final word on mosquitos. I believe they are the smoking gun that no God can exist, or at least no Abrahamic god that considers humans to be his beloved children. I hate the mosquitos here, they are big, and like the taste of white man. I've had a pint of blood drained daily.
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