It's like hitting a solid wall of humidity

Trip Start Feb 20, 2002
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Trip End Nov 18, 2002


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Where I stayed
light house lodge

Flag of Sri Lanka  ,
Saturday, February 23, 2002

"big trip?" the gray haired women asked as I fished through my bags for my passport.

"yep" I replied shuffling through my papers.

As she flipped through my travel documents, noticing all of my visas, she snarled, "How long have you been planning this?"

"about 2 years" I answered.

She didn't seem impressed.

More troubling was that she, the unsmiling Air Canada ticket agent, was hardly in a good mood. The Levesque charm wasn't going to squeeze a first class upgrade from this one. Damn...

As I walked away with my tickets in hand and my backpack checked in for a long flight to Sri lanka, I turned to catch her crack a tiny smile, wink and say "bring back alot of memories".

" I will... I will..."

And that was that, adrenaline pumping, heading for my gate, those words stuck to me, as I thought of how I would be, what I will have seen and done when I would return to the same airport in Montreal on my way home, after 9 months of travelling.

Like all other trips, when they start, I always find myself thinking "only 3 more weeks then back to work", and like clockwork, sitting in the airport, I found myself thinking the same thing, but this time it was different. "9 months Luc!", "What the hell were you thinking!". The deep feeling in my gut telling me that I should be at work, wouldn't disappear until I had read my Lonely Planet Sri Lanka Guide book cover to cover... Now it was starting, that feeling deep down that makes us all want to explore this great planet was taking over.

-- Jet Lag, Amplified

"Three days of flights, no big deal", but when the 3 days are each spent in a different timezone, it gets pretty painful. "Is it daytime", "Am or PM?", "Am I hungry?". Montreal, London, Jordan, Colombo, Sri Lanka and finally Sleep... Sleep... Sleep.

Luckily I managed to make the best of my London stop over by escaping the airport and scurrying around Westminster Abbey, London tower and Big Ben. Great sites but cold and gray weather... get me to the beach!

On the flight from Amman to Colombo, I stayed up all night talking with Wajira, a native Sri lankan coconut farmer and entrepener returning from seeing his wife in London. Wajira, and I spoke for hours and hours through the final segment of my flights, until we finally parted ways in Colombo, Wajira promising to show me around Sri Lanka, and his coconut plantation, once his affairs were settled. An offer I quickly jumped on.

And now I am in Galle, Sri Lanka. In an old dutch fort which surrounds this walled city on the western Sri Lankan Coast. The hotel owner picked me up and drove me through the chaotic streets of Colombo, passed cows and goats all seemingly at ease roaming the streets amidst unimaginable havoc, to his hotel here, the Light House Lodge.

It's hot here, I'm wiping large beads of dripping sweat from my forehead as I type this entry on my Palm by candle light. The power is eerily shutdown every night in Sri Lanka around 7pm for 2 hours I'm told. Candles are the only way to see your way around the hotel, in which, tonight, I am the only guest.

Before retreating to the guest house for a home cooked meal of spicy curry and rice which Uma promised to make for me, I strolled along the ramparts. The outsidel decaying walls of the old dutch fort provide a view of one of the nicest sunsets I've ever seen. The sun, glowing like a fiery redish pink fireball, decended slowly over the Indian Ocean tonight. A fitting farewell to reality.

--

I had originally thought that I would be writing one entry per country but seeing as I'm travelling alone and have plenty of extra time to myself, there may be quite a few more ( fair warning! You may be hearing quite a bit from me :) )

Before a bead of sweat short circuits this keyboard, and the candles burn out, I'll end this entry by saying, "It's hot, sticky, dark and muggy but I wouldn't trade it for the world right now".

Luc.
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Comments

Naren Senaratna on

Hi Luc, nice surprise actually ... just stumbled upon your blog when I was checking on our humidity level today... the best part is I am having guests right now from Montreal and the man's name is Luc too ... anyway I arranged a roller coaster tour of ten days covering some of the cultural sites in the north central region, the hill country, the national parks in the south, a few days beach stay and some time at my place just south of Colombo so that they can do a little shopping for clothes etc which are apparently most sought after as it's a quarter of the price you'd pay for in a retail store back home ... well I must say they've had a brilliant time so far and say that they loved every minute of it so far. Anyway about you blog ... I noticed that you've failed to mention anything else other than Galle so I presume you've been just to Galle only. I wish you do come back again to our beautiful tropical country and enjoy the rest of it as well, now that the war is over and you can now visit every single corner of the country and besides that, there are no power cuts ... that was just an emergency measure adapted in light of shortage of Hydro electricity quite some time ago, now the country has Thermal, Coal and will soon be going in for Nuclear power as well. The roads are brilliant from the time you visited and there are hardly any cows on the street now. As for the driving yes it's still a bit nerve wrecking but strict policing has made it much safer now ... so please do visit Sri Lanka once again and enjoy the rest of the country as well ... you are most welcome to contact me if you need any assistance in booking fantastic place as I am well connected in the local tourism industry.

Naren Senaratna on

Sorry mate ... I didn't notice the rest of your entries ... so my comment is irrelevant about just Galle .. you seem to have had a great time that's great ...

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