Sleepless nights: another motive that contributed to such gloomy sensation. From the very first day, the organization provided housing; simple, yet comfortable. One full size bed, toilet and cold showers were in fact superior to previous experiences. Yet, previous experiences did not come with the neighbor’s dog. It wasn’t just a dog; it was the single most obnoxious dog I have ever encountered. Night after night, from early evening until sunrays broke through the clouds, it would not discontinue barking. And by continuity, I mean non-stop ear penetrating, louder than earphones, bed turning barking. I never wished bad for any living thing, but I surely envisioned lightning strikes, vocal cords rupture, and even sketched out sleeping-pills-filled-food plans.
A twelve-hour train ride transports me back to Colombo. Just exactly a week ago, the same reverse trajectory brought me to Badulla; except a shorter bus ride was then opted. From the interior of my first-class carriage, with a decoration reminiscent of the Victorian period (lost after years of use), diversified plantations add layers to the surrounding hills. My seat faces the last wall of the train, one gigantic window, which provides a backwards view of the landscape. As the train moves forward, a clear notion of departure moves away, leaving behind impressions of one memorable week.
As I watched one of the most scenic sunsets from atop long-standing fortified walls in Galle, Sri Lanka, an older man, sitting off in the distance, had tears running down his eyes. He stared loneliness; I saw interest. I smiled and he smiled back; an invitation to get closer? I sympathized for his empty gaze and reallocated just inches apart. “Today is my son’s birthday,” he soon confessed. I smiled, once again, and inquired whether his son lived far away.
Right after arrival in Colombo, the scenic southern beaches of Galle and Unawatuna were visited during a couple days. Right at the height of low season, deserted beaches, empty hotels and fewer familiar faces brought back the sensation of remoteness.Sri Lanka embodies colorfulness and vividness; hence, do not let the golden touch to deceive preliminary judgments. Once the appearances are extracted, gold is obtained.