I eventually made it to Galle today

Trip Start Sep 21, 2005
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Thursday, February 16, 2006

Day 99 Wed 15th Feb 2006
I eventually made it to Galle today
It was another super hot night last night, I got up around 10.30 and jumped in to another cold shower (no, still not feeling it really) I skipped breakfast, mainly because I couldn't be bothered to go out and get anything. I ordered something from the takeaway at around midday. I spent the day just watching TV and catching up with stuff on my notebook, I did venture outside for a bit but the sun got the better of me and I retreated back to the guesthouse.

After yesterday's goings on I didn't want to go to Colombo again and Uma (the lady who owns the Summer House) phoned to say her husband would be in Colombo today and that he could pick me up to bring me to Galla. I was going to head south anyway and a free lift is always appreciated so I agreed. They also have a guesthouse there and that's where I am stopping tonight. Affan (Uma's husband) was supposed to collect me around 3pm, I called him at 3.30 and he said his car had overheated and he would be running a bit late (in this heat I'm not surprised). I was in no hurry as there was this film on the box that I really wanted to watch (Lujja, Indian classic movie). He turned up at 5pm and after changing the sheets on the beds and having a general tidy up of the house, we left in his mini-van for Galle. Affan had some friends with him, they were a family who had just been to the airport to see off their son, who was going to a Middle-Eastern country to work. Affan had the AC on full whack and its just as well because it was really HOT in there. I was sitting at the front with Affan and the rest of them were in the back, no one was talking in the car and about 30 minutes into the journey I turned around to find them all asleep! I think Affan wanted to join them, he nearly pranged (crashed) the van twice. The first time we nearly went into the back of a bus and the second time we were coming up to a bend that he didn't see till the van came off the road, I got worried at this point. At first I thought it was because he has one glass eye and maybe his vision wasn't as good as it could be, but then when I looked over at him I could see his eyes closing as he drove. I did what any passenger should do in this situation and started talking to him, it was then that he told me they had left Galle at 5am this morning and he had drove 4 hours to the airport, 1 hour to Colombo, 1 hour to Atharugriya and then the trip back to Galle was 3 hours. That's a lot of driving! I kept talking to him about everything and anything and at 7pm we stopped off for a bite to eat. The only problem with AC is you eventually have to get out and when you do the heat hits you like a truck!

We went into this restaurant and I had my first taste of authentic Sri Lankan food. We all sat around a table and the waitress came over with a tray of an assortment of bread rolls and buns. Everyone just dived in and took what they wanted, Affan tried to explain to me what they all were but you just have to get stuck in to really find out. I had this donut type thing, it was nice (ish). Then we all ordered drinks and I asked for tea, I hadn't had a cup of tea for a couple of days now. When it came over it was basically English tea with loads of sugar in it (I miss Indian tea). We all got back into the van and made our way down to Galle. On the way we passed Hikkaduwa and Affan started talking about the Tsunami. Seeing it on the telly was one thing but hearing a detailed account from someone who was there was another. It left a lump in my throat and as we drove through Hikkaduwa you could see the buildings that were ripped apart buy the Tsumani. The rebuilding of the towns that were affected was well under way but so many people lost there loved ones and that can never be replaced.

We got in to Galle around 9pm and after dropping of Affan's friend we came to The Lighthouse Lodge in the Fort. Uma was here to great us and after putting my bags in my room (I had to take it up two flights of stairs, must loose some of the weight) I came down and ate the dinner Uma had made for me. The food was really nice, proper home cooked Sri Lankan food, there were two curries, a fried fish and some red rice. Uma lives in the house at the back of the guesthouse with her husband and two children, a boy named Akile who is 9 and a girl named Alisa who is 7. I sat with them for a bit while they watched a Sri Lankan soup on the telly, they were all really into it and I didn't know what was going on (Uma did try to explain it though), so I just came up to my room. The room is nice and it has an attached bathroom, the ceiling fan is closer than in the Summer House so hopefully it will keep my cool during the night. They also have a mosquito net over the bed, I've never used one before and am wondering how effective it will actually be. Only one way to find out I suppose, goodnight!
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