A day in Hikkaduwa

Trip Start Sep 21, 2005
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Friday, February 17, 2006

Day 101 Fri 17th Feb 2006
A day in Hikkaduwa
Again the house was empty this morning by the time I got downstairs. Once again the maid made me breakfast and I sat out on the terrace to eat it. The sun was already out in full force and it was shining directly on me, this made having breakfast there a bit uncomfortable. I went out into Galle this morning, walking through the Fort, everything was nice and calm, a great way to start the day. I walked past the place I had lunch yesterday and the old lady came running out just to say hello. I went to the post office first to find out how much it would cost me to send a parcel to Australia. Its going to be around Rs3,500 for 3kg, I thought that was a bit much but then I really don't want to be carrying all the stuff I won't need. Next stop was the Internet Café, I was determined to get as much updates done as I could. I am nearly there with it all, only the last couple of day to go now! (I hope everyone reading this actually appreciates the effort it takes to upload all the travelogues and pictures!!!)

I managed to find a half decent place to eat, it was right by the Internet café, I guess I just walked right past it yesterday. I had a veg curry with rice, the man serving the food was a bit tight with the curry, but for Rs130 its all good I suppose. I noticed yesterday that a lot of people were doing the whole 'umbrella' thing (using it to keep the sun off). I also saw people doing this in Kerela and think its a good idea, so I was out there today doing the same. It makes all the difference and you know what they say, ' when in Rome...' I came back to the Lodge for around 2pm, Uma and Affan were getting ready to leave for Colombo, they had 6 guests coming to the Summer House and needed to get up there to sort stuff out for their arrival. I had spoke to Uma last night about going to Hikkaduwa for the day and they were going in that direction so Affan offered to drop me off on the way (another free lift, no complaints from me!). I got dropped of in Hikkaduwa around 3pm, Affan droped me at the front of a hotel owned by a friend of his, he told me I could get on to the White beach through the hotel. I walked AROUND the place and got onto the beach.

When Affan said it was the White Beach, I don't know if he was referring to the colour of the sand, or the people on it! The beach was full of white people (I should really say Europeans), on there package holidays getting tanned up so they can show all there mates when they get home. The thing is we had driven past places where the beaches were empty, and looked much nicer than this one. I love the sea could sit on a seafront for ages but that lying on the beach thing trying to get brown, nah not me! (I'm brown enough already) I walked along the beach and saw debris left over from the tsunami, there were bits of wall lying on the beach in parts where to package holiday makers don't go. Apparently Hikkaduwa was quite badly hit by the tsunami and seeing things like that, makes you aware of just how bad it must have been. I found a quiet place on the beach and sat down under the shade of a palm tree that had been nearly uprooted by the tsunami and was now at quite an acute angle (see pic). I sat there reading for quite some time than a local lad came up to me and did the whole 'you from where' thing, his name was Galaxy (obviously not his real Lankan name). I got talking to him and he started telling me about how the hotel he worked at was being rebuilt after the tsunami (it was just behind us). It was great talking with him and he kept taking the mick out of the tourist that were walking along the beach. He also pointed out the Turtles that were in the sea, I had been sitting there for ages and didn't even realise they were there. I thought I might get to see a really nice sunset from the beach but it started clouding over and so I made my way back onto the main Galle road. Galaxy had told me about this club called Vibrations, they were having a party tonight and there would be loads of foreigners there. I was quite tempted to go but I had no one to go with and have NEVER been out on my own before, I just think that's really sad if you have to do that. I'm not really a club goer but really wanted to meet some people just to hold a conversation with someone that is longer that - 'where from you'!!! I walked up and down Hikkaduwa's main Galle road (first up one side than down the other), it had the usual array of shops catering for tourist (gifts and all that). At about 7pm I went into a restaurant that was on the first floor of a building on the main road, it had a balcony overlooking the road so I went and sat there. I ordered yet another veg curry and rice and just watched the world go by while I waited for my food. It was getting dark by now and I needed to think about heading back to Galle. The curry was not as nice as this afternoons but it was OK. I asked for the bill and along with it came a free shot of whisky (how nice is that?) I downed it in one gulp! JOKE!!! I sent it back with the payment telling the waiter I didn't drink, the shocked look on his face is something I have come accustomed to over the years. I had a little chat with the guy (and yes it started with 'where from you?), he was also going on about the party at Vibrations and how good it was going to be, he said they were going to have live drummers there. I headed down onto the main road with the picture of this party in my head, by this point I was gagging for a night out but there was no way I would go on my own. I walked down to where the bus stop was and waited there. I got talking to more locals and again the conversation stopped after 'where from you?). I'm sorry, I know I keep mentioning that but that's how it went!

Whilst waiting for my bus, I saw a couple of girls waking towards the stop. One of them looked Indian and nearly got knocked over by a truck as she was kind-of walking in the road, as they walked past I told her she should stay out of the road and we got talking. The Indian looking girl was from Israel and the white girl from Russia. They started asking me about the Vibrations party, and told them I was no wiser than them as to what it would actually be like. Anyway, we arranged to meet there later on, just as we had confirmed this the bus turned up and jumped on. IT WAS PACKED!!! For the first five minutes I was hanging half out the back door and then EVEN MORE people got on it and I somehow ended up standing in the aisle. This old man started asking me 'where from you?' and than pretended to know what I was talking about when I started to talk with him, I think he was drunk but we had a laugh on the bus. We were packed in there like sardines in a tin, the driver was on a mission too! I thought Punjab-roadways was bad, but these guy are worse, see they have busses with power and that can stop quickly so they make the most of it. They have no concept of passenger safety or comfort what so ever, I'm just glad we got there in 20 minutes.

I went back to the Lodge, got showered and changed and headed out again. Slight problem though I left my keys in the room. I had to get Akheel to call Uma and find out where the spare was. I got a bus to take me most of the way to Hikkaduwa , and then took a tuk tuk the rest. I got to the club around 11pm and things were well under way. The party was out doors, they had a DJ playing dance music on the right, the bar at the back, a couple of cabins to the left and a Ping Pong table just as you walk in on the left. I got myself a drink and made my way over to the Ping table, they had some tables and chair near it and I went and sat there for a bit. Two locals were playing on the table, they were not very good and after 10 minutes or so I asked if I could have a game. Its been ages since I've played but it was good fun, I got talking to the guys around the table and they were basically waiting for the 'europeab' girls to get drunk so they could 'escort' them back to their guesthouses! After a few games I made my way over to bar to get myself another drink and bumped into the Israeli girl. She had a fag in one hand and a shot in the other (talk about a major put-off), after a quick 'hi, your still alive then' she made her way over to a cabin where the Russian girl was, she was expecting me to follow her but I really wasn't interested. I went back over to the table and Galaxy had turned up (the guy I met at the beach). I stayed there for a while and then this lady came up to play, she looked Indian, and when I got talking to her, I found out her parents were from Rajasthan (good guess huh!). We talked for a while and before I knew it, it was 2am. I really didn't want to stay any longer and made my way out onto the main road. Everyone told me that I could catch a bus to Galle even at that time of night so I waited outside for one to pass by. A couple of buses came zooming past, but none of them stopped, I started to walk towards the bus stand and tried to flag down some more busses. After about 15 minutes I was pretty fed up with the whole thing and then this truck (which I thought was a bus) came along, I waved out my arm frantically and when it got close joined both my hand together, as if to pray for it to stop, and it did. I asked the co-pilot if they were going to Galle and he told me to jump in. They couldn't speak English so we sat in silence listening to the radio all the way to Galle. I know you shouldn't get lifts from people like that but I didn't have anything of value with me, and I'm still alive so alls well that ends well.

I got off the truck and walked back to the Lodge, there were a lot of people still around the dock, fishermen, most of them I expect. As I walked up to the lodge I saw the light from the lighthouse and because I had never seen one working before wanted to go and have a look. I walked up to the Sea front and sat on the outer wall of the Fort for a bit just listening to the sea and watching the lighthouse do its thing. Then I realised it was 3am and that I should really be thinking about bed now!
The party was not that good and I will defiantly NOT be doing that again.
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