Sunday, March 28, 2010

Charming Day in Idyllic Negombo, Sri Lanka

Negombo, Sri Lanka - Negombo exudes a laidback charm that its visitors relish. It lies 50 kilometers north of Colombo, and an irresistible beachside town that I almost missed.

I earlier thought of just spending my last night in Colombo and then something lit up. Why not? So from my charming room in Ottery Inn, I headed to the Fort's Bastian Mawatha station and took Bus 240. It's only 70 rupees and took a little more than an hour. Upon reaching Negombo station, finding my bajaj to take me to Hotel Silver Sands was fast! My driver Roshan soon became my guide - for just 500 rupees - to roam the nearby Island of Duwa later in the day.

Hotel Silver Sands is an unexpected wonderment - moorish architecture, sophisticated white-washed interiors. After a much needed rest, I took to the beach and had a leisurely walk, observing the local folk. There was a tout who started chatting me away. I knew he would eventually want money from me. To end his charade fast, I reached down my pocket. I had spare so why not? But he told me not to. Saying he'd rather I go to the store and buy milk than me handing him money. The nerve! He had another think coming if he thinks I'd waste my time personally buying him some milk! All the drama - and I am just too dead tired to be civil! So I walked away! That's what I call missed chances! He scampered after me, saying it was OK if I'd just hand him cash. No way, Jose! You've had your chance!

I turned to some corner until I reached the main street of Lewis Place, a narrow road lined by stores, guesthouses, a post office, a couple of internet shops, an art shop and several restaurants.

I like my hotel - Hotel Silver Sands. I am glad I somehow chose this over Ocean View Guesthouse which I saw awhile back - and it doesn't face the beach, but the street. Silver Sands has an enviable beachfront location, making it perfect when you just wanna languidly stare at the ocean. I witnessed a beautiful sunset today. It's a fitting end to my Sri Lankan adventures.

This is the Eye in the Sky.

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