Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sri Lankan Tales - Lost in My Anuradhapuran Reverie

My car didn’t have AC. I must have downed my 3rd bottle of water within an hour. My driver was trying hard to catch up with my itinerary’s list, and he was rather thorough. Devil with a purpose, I actually considered someone was probably waiting for him back home. But not on my time's money. It was really up to me to optimize my visit of the ancient city of Anuradhapura. I sometimes interchange it with Myanmar's ancient city called Amarapura which I visted last year. I considered getting an AC car, but hiring a car all for myself – instead of sharing the bulk with some other tourists – was not inexpensive. But I’d rather be the boss. I wanted the car and the driver at my beck and call.

My driver earlier suggested we take a short break at a cozy bread shop in Dambulla. I might as well recharge. My legs were starting to shake from the fast turnover of places. Who says traveling is all relaxation? My travels have constantly tested my stamina, but I am not complaining. I know one day when I am old and grey, I shall look back on all these with fondness.

My driver would stop in the middle of nowhere and point me to some scenic spot, and I’d be – “Uh, nice!” – Polite but a little perplexed with his choice of “nice”. Beauty after all is in the eye of the beholder. As we were winding down our Anuradhapura adventures, I have conjured wild elephants lazily crossing down our road. We were traipsing through the jungles of Sri Lanka, and it wasn’t a far fetched idea to encounter such wildlife. In my reverie, I didn’t notice that we were already plying through the lakeside; gliding through a placid lake. I somehow waited for my driver to stop the car. I was thinking, “Hey, this would be your cue to stop and show me this beautiful scenic spot!” He didn’t! A few minutes later, I asked him to.

The gentlest winds blew against my hair. There was hardly a soul in this wet paradise. It felt like a solemn moment to thank the heavens for such beauty.

Then a motorcycle drove by, reminding me I had places to go. What did Brown say? And miles to go before I sleep. So be it.

This is the Eye in the Sky!

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