Sri Lanka – Trincomalee and beyond

Back on the bus again for us. An old friend used to live in Trinco and it’s back on the coast! Sounded like good enough couple of reasons to jump on a five hour local bus. Bus stations here have to be seen to be believed. A complete tangle of diesel fume belching vehicles with air horns at full volume surrounded a horde of shouting lads clutching fist fulls of rupees! Turns out, the rupee clenchers are drumming up business for the drivers. Let them know where you want to go, if you get a suitable amount of ‘head wiggles’ hop on and hope for the best! First class please! Not so much! A few seats are reserved for clergy, pregnant women and invalids. The rest of us join in with the rabble of goats, chickens and occasional monkey to find a seat!

No real road rules here. Pecking order has some uniformity, Air horn is number one, Close second are cows and trucks. Swastika emblazoned bovines fortunately somewhat different to the w@nkers that marched into Poland almost 80 years ago!

After about 5 hours, the poor old gluteus maximus now seems to be a living piece of the rock hard seat, cooled only partly by the steady flow of sweat heading South! Uncountable near misses and 1 toilet stop (maybe not!!) later we arrive in Trinco, where a bloke selling underpants and baby wipes seems to be doing a brisk trade!

Getting 2 rucksacks and 2 people into a tuk tuk is an art form that we have near perfected. More functional than pretty but we soon arrive at our new home in Upaveli, about 4km from Trinco.

High season is over here. Many places are shutting up shop and following the tourist army to the South Coast. Perfect!!! One bar on the beach, a generous selection of eateries, a couple of small shops and a heap of near empty accommodation to choose from.

Plans to save a few $$ by eating at home were futile! A selection of manky fruit from the local shop was triple the price of getting it done for you. Outrageously good curry, rice, daal, popadums etc sets you back about 4 bucks. We had an initial plan to stay 3 nights here, maybe a little longer before the trek back to Colombo and home.

Weather pretty ordinary elsewhere on the island, we stayed for 4 weeks. Shifted to the nicest accommodation in the vicinity and lived like royalty.

Not long in, we decided to donate our globetrotting kitchen utensils to a new restaurant that was sorely in need of a few sharp knives and a few other bits. Bear’s rucksack now significantly lighter!!

Small teams of fishermen on the beach spend about 4 hours dragging in an endless length of rope and nets. Sometimes worthwhile, others nearly bugger all except a few small sardines, some nasty looking jellyfish, a grumpy looking turtle a few pissed off puffer fish that tried their hardest not to be rehabilitated.

Cows and goats wandering freely along the roads and beaches, monkeys running amok in the mango trees.

Wandered past one restaurant in search of a late brekky one day and saw a large crab waving at us. Actually, he was trying to escape! An hour or so later, curry crab masala arrived. Breakfast turned into the best brunch ever and our introduction to Nina’s.

It was almost our last night here when we finally cooked for them and invited 15 or so of our new best friends from the beach bar! We sh@t ourselves waiting for the restaurant to fill but it was all smiles

4 weeks on the beach sounds like a long time, 52 weeks covering unfeasible fun and adventure sounds a lot longer! Both now coming to a close 😢. Time to move again. Sigiriya is our last stop before the airport….

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