The post and summary of the trip can be found here.
♥24th March 2013♥
We have to leave the hotel, Fresco Water Villa, early as we have a lot of distant to cover. The girls were complaining that they don’t even get to enjoy the hotel and swim.
Fresco Water Villa. Our big triple room. The girls love the big beds all joined together, so that they can do forward roll, backward roll on cushioned surface
Our room (bottom right) with a verandah
Oh well, we have 6hrs (6hrs journey with minimal stop. We took 8hrs because we had so many photography stops made.) of driving to cover. Swimming can wait.
We made many stops along the way. First was at Dambulla, where we saw a peaceful demonstration against UN declaration of Sri Lanka Human Right Violation. The first demonstration witnessed by the girls.
Policeman controlling traffic flow
Women demonstrating against UN declaration of Sri Lanka Human Right Violation
Tuk Tuk’s convoy at the demonstration
participating in photographing the event.
Next stop, Dambulla Wholesale Market, this is the largest vegetable wholesale market in Sri Lanka. All kind of produce from the farms in the central district are distributed here.
Stack of betel leaves
A stall set up to sell Areca nut & Betel Leave wraps
Sacks of Fresh carrots
Sacks of Green chillies
Sacks of Potatoes with smiley workers
Even when carrying heavy load, they didn’t forget to smile.
While waiting for hubs, a friendly owner, skinned 2 carrots for the girls to munch on. The girls, not really a fan of raw carrots, had to munch on it so as not to be rude (under my nudging and ‘glaring’).
Such is the kindness of the smiley Sri Lankans.
We went passed Kandi without stopping, and then the roads started to be winding as we began to ascend to the hill countries.
Near one of the estates, there was a Hindu celebration going on. Lots of locals where participating, and then van/car loads of tourists stopped to watch. We were one of them.
Local spectating the celebration
OMG! Men suspended on hooks!
Women with pierced cheeks who seemed to be in a trance, danced along
There were lots of cheering, screaming, drumming, dancing. The girls were afraid after a while, I have to bring them away from the crowd and had Asanka help watch over them.
The local children seemed to enjoy themselves
The star of the celebration was this man. He has lots of hooks on his body
Women were crying and cheering/wailing for him
After a while, I myself got uncomfortable, with all the drumming, the chanting, the trance dancing, and seeing so many men suspended on hooks.
We drove on, and arrived at Nuwara Eliya, a little scenic town which has very strong British influence.
We only had a short toilet stop, because it’s still a long way to Haputale.
Roads got more and more winding, and I got sick a few times until I moved to the front passenger seat. I breathed a sigh of relief, when we finally arrived at Haputale.
More than eight hours car journey, and it’s finally over! Everybody was so happy, we started jumping for joy, starting with Asanka.
Then the girls.
Our hotel for the night, Melheim Resort is 15 minutes away from Haputale town centre. We passed by a small village before arriving at the hotel, and we saw boys playing cricket (the most popular sport in Sri Lanka) with their self made bat.
The Junior Cricket Team
After a couple of photos taken, 2 brave boys came forward and asked, “Pen? Pen?” (asking us if we have pens on us to give them).
We only have one (not enough for them), so we told them no. The boys asked then, “Dollar? Dollar?”; and got told off by Asanka.
We have some snacks brought from Malaysia with us, so I got the girls to pass the boys a bottle of Pringles. The boys, happily took it and distributed the Pringles with his friends, such a gem they are, for their willingness to share.
The girls were so happy to arrive at Melheim Resort. Too dark to enjoy the view, but we could imagine how beautiful it is. Luckily we have Asanka booked the room with half board, we had a good dinner and then an early night.