Beautiful Eye

Based on a True Story

Galle Fort: A Walking Tour

English: Amangalla, Fort Galle, Sri Lanka

English: Amangalla, Fort Galle, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: building under repair in Galle fort i...

English: building under repair in Galle fort in Sri Lanka Photograph taken summer — autumn 2003 by Joedjemal Refer — http://www.GalleZone.com (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The fort of Galle in southern Sri Lanka, first...

The fort of Galle in southern Sri Lanka, first a Portuguese, then a Dutch stronghold (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Large church, Galle fort in Sri Lanka...

English: Large church, Galle fort in Sri Lanka Photograph taken summer — autumn 2003 by Joedjemal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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My Lunch of Jumbo Prawns

Today we came back to Galle Fort to look around at the old architecture.  The first stop was the library built in 1832.  We decided to ask to have a look at their oldest book.  A memoir written in 1803 by a British author was presented to us.  The binding was redone but the pages were original.  I was lucky enough to hold this book in my hands.  The next stop was the old post office that still stands today dating back to 1872.  It is still fully operational.  As you walk around towards the clock tower, you can see the Tsunami 2004 damage.  There is still a lot of construction going on here.  For lunch, we headed back to the Rampart Hotel and decided to try the jumbo prawns in garlic sauce.  Believe it or not, but they were even better than the seafood platter.

 

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Hikkaduwa

 

English: Fishing boats near the Hikkaduwa beach.

English: Fishing boats near the Hikkaduwa beach. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Recovery and reconstruction efforts following ...

Recovery and reconstruction efforts following the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, western coast of Thailand (Photo credit: ILO in Asia and the Pacific)

 

English: Hikkaduwa beach by sunset.

English: Hikkaduwa beach by sunset. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

English: Hikkaduwa beach.

English: Hikkaduwa beach. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Construction of house after December 2004 Tsun...

Construction of house after December 2004 Tsunami in Matara District of Sri Lanka. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

USGS graphics showing the two wave forms of th...

USGS graphics showing the two wave forms of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Countries most affected by the tsunami, with t...

Countries most affected by the tsunami, with the earthquake’s epicenter. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

It is very hard to get a good Internet signal in this area.  Best to walk around and keep trying.  This beach area was first popular with the hippies of 1970s is one of Sri Lanka’s best deals to stay at right on the beach.  In fact most of these beach front properties are US$60 or under a night.  If you want AC and hot water, expect to pay another US$10 a night.  You really don’t need hot water and most of the AC units here are quite old.  I say save your money and go primitive.

 

This area was badly damaged by the Tsunami of 2004 and you can still see its impact.  When I was living here 20 years ago, these guest houses had quite a bit of beach front property back in the day, the ocean had less of a current, and the fishermen were bringing in a lot more fish.  Sad to see this morning that one of the fishing boats did not bring in any.  Surfing is still popular in this area though.

 

Today, I am determined to find the site of my 10th grade Geography field trip here but so much has changed.  Wish me luck.

 

Animation of 2004 Indonesia tsunami

Animation of 2004 Indonesia tsunami (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

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Lunch at Galle Fort

English: Ancient canon mount in Galle fort, Sr...

English: Ancient canon mount in Galle fort, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The fort of Galle in southern Sri Lanka, first...

The fort of Galle in southern Sri Lanka, first a Portuguese, then a Dutch stronghold (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: One of the gates, Galle fort in Sri L...

English: One of the gates, Galle fort in Sri Lanka Photograph taken summer — autumn 2003 by Joedjemal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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My Seafood Platter

Sorry for not keeping you updated on my travels, but I have been either too exhausted or have not had an Internet connection.  I have been riding elephants, dodging iguana’s on roads, going on tours of colonial hotels from the 1800’s, and leopard watching.  More details on these adventures coming up soon.

Right now I am blogging from the Rampart Hotel right inside the Galle Fort.  Galle Fort was built by the Portuguese in 1588.  The Rampart Hotel is a colonial hotel which has the best seafood in the area.  I highly recommend the seafood platter.

English: Galle fort

English: Galle fort (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

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Day 5 and 6: Train to Kandy

English: Main Street in the Fort with the Ghaf...

English: Main Street in the Fort with the Ghaffoor Building in the background, Colombo, Sri Lanka Français : Rue principale dans le quartier du Fort avec le Ghaffoor Building en arrière-plan, Colombo, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The wonderfully painted Jami-Ul-Alfar Mosque (...

The wonderfully painted Jami-Ul-Alfar Mosque (Pettah Mosque) in the Pettah harbour area near the Fort Station. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On day 5 I was not blogging from the beach, but from Odel which is Sri Lanka’s first department store.  This store has grown so much in the last 20 years.  They sell clothes, tea, gifts, candy, and handicrafts.

Today (day 6), I am blogging from a moving train to Kandy.  The scenery up to the hill country  is breathtaking.  You can book a 1st class ticket at tourist information at the Fort Railway Station.

The Jami-ul-Alfar Mosque in Pettah, built in 1...

The Jami-ul-Alfar Mosque in Pettah, built in 1909, is one of the oldest mosques in Colombo. Created by me (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Taqiyah (or kufi caps) in Pettah mark...

English: Taqiyah (or kufi caps) in Pettah market, Colombo, Sri Lanka Français : Taqiyah au marché de Pettah, Colombo, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

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Afternoon Tea at the Mount Lavinia Hotel

mount_lavinia_hotel_sunset

mount_lavinia_hotel_sunset (Photo credit: Chonil Weerawansa)

22x20px|border Sri Lanka, Mount Lavinia Hotel ...

22x20px|border Sri Lanka, Mount Lavinia Hotel

Today I am blogging from the famous Mount Lavinia Hotel.  This amazing white building was built by a British governor in 1805 to be his house.  This governor fell in love with a local lady here and named this mansion after her.  The beach here is spectacular, bit it is not recommended to swim here due to the strong current.  This beach is just a 10 minute ride from the Fort Railway Station and costs US$0.38.  This area is great for a quick get away from Colombo.

The governor's palace, Mount Lavinia, Sri Lanka

The governor’s palace, Mount Lavinia, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

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Day 4 in Paradise

Narigama beach, Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka

Narigama beach, Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Mydaas!)

Hikkaduwa morning

Hikkaduwa morning (Photo credit: Shreyans Bhansali)

Hikkaduwa

Hikkaduwa (Photo credit: Photosightfaces)

English: Fishing boats near the Hikkaduwa beach.

English: Fishing boats near the Hikkaduwa beach. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Hikkaduwa beach by sunset.

English: Hikkaduwa beach by sunset. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The beach at Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka.

The beach at Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Hikkaduwa beach.

English: Hikkaduwa beach. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: seema malaka temple, colombo

English: seema malaka temple, colombo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gangaramaya temple in Colombo

Gangaramaya temple in Colombo (Photo credit: Dhammika Heenpella / Images of Sri Lanka)

Gangaramaya temple in Colombo

Gangaramaya temple in Colombo (Photo credit: Dhammika Heenpella / Images of Sri Lanka)

Yesterdays highlight included seeing my high school.  To my surprise the school nurse is still there and remembered me.  I then found my second house and happened to spot the president at Gangaramaya Temple for his birthday.

Today we are off to buy our train tickets for Hikkaduwa to find the site of where my 10th grade Geography field trip was held.

Gangaramaya Temple - Monk in the Morning Mist

Gangaramaya Temple – Monk in the Morning Mist (Photo credit: tantonr)

 

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Back in Sri Lanka Day 2 and Day 3

World Trade Center twin towers with the Bank o...

World Trade Center twin towers with the Bank of Ceylon tower to their left and the Presidential Secretariat in the foreground, Colombo, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: The Colombo World Trade Center in Sri...

English: The Colombo World Trade Center in Sri Lanka. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Galle Face Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka ...

English: Galle Face Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka Français : Galle Face Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Galle Face Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka ...

English: Galle Face Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka Français : Galle Face Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The entrance of the Galle Fave Hotel, Colombo,...

The entrance of the Galle Fave Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have to say that Sri Lanka is growing.  Growing is a good thing.  After many years of war, it is good to see a World Trade Center up, and a Hyatt being built.  The Galle Face Hotel which was built in 1864 is under renovations.

Today I am off to see the high school I graduated from, the Overseas School.  Lets see if any of my teachers are still there.  Later on, I am having a small gathering at the Colombo Swimming Club which was the main hang out for my school.

English: Galle Face Hotel seen on the way.

English: Galle Face Hotel seen on the way. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Back to Sri Lanka 20 Years Later

Day 1

My husband and I arrived shortly after midnight. Surprisingly we got off the plane by a modern jet way. After entering the airport, the sweet smell of cloves, cinnamon, and incense filled the air. Moving sidewalks, AC, and an upscale mall has replaced the chickens and goats. Immigration took a maximum of 2 minutes to pass through with no hassles.  Today is writing on the beach day in Negombo.  Welcome back to Sri Lanka!

English: Three female Sri Lanka garment workers.

English: Three female Sri Lanka garment workers. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


 

 

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How Old is Sri Lanka?

If you had a chance to take my poll last week on How Old is Sri Lanka, then I am sure you are waiting for the correct answer.  The correct answer is #1.  According to my research, stone objects were found that dated back to 500,000 BC.  Please have a look at my presentation for more details.  I am looking forward to seeing many of you in Sri Lanka soon.

Growing up White in South Asia

Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

Sigiriya, Sri Lanka (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

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Sri Lanka Represented at the Seoul International Woman’s Association Christmas Bazaar

Yesterday I had the opportunity to visit the Seoul International Woman’s Association Christmas Bazaar.  With over 50 countries being represented, it was quite crowded with so many exotic merchandise being sold.  I was of course thrilled to see Sri Lanka being represented and was very excited to tell them my story.

SIWA Christmas Bazaar

SIWA Christmas Bazaar

 

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