Sat 16/03/13 10:32
It was a great week

Well, I’m back home and have been for almost twenty-four hours. I can’t say that I’m happy to be back, but I will admit that it’s nice to sleep in my own bed. ☺ I got back last night at about 1015 and actually arrived home after going through passport control and customs at about midnight. That meant that I have only today to get ready for school tomorrow.

Today has been a mix of trying to put the videos I took in Sri Lanka into some meaningful sense so I can upload it to youtube, doing laundry, and of course planning my next holiday in June. I know that I’ll be going back to the US for a week, but after that there are some things that I really want to do. The first is tour India, then I had so much fun being around water that I’m thinking about taking a sailboat around Turkey’s beaches, (sounds expensive, but it really isn’t).

I loved my time in Sri Lanka, in fact I don’t that I’ve ever really enjoyed myself the same way I did for the week I was there. It was a mix of sun, relaxation, and lots of water sports. Most of the people I talked to were warm and friendly, and I think that I actually made a friend or two.

Since this is my last entry for Spring Break 2013, I’ll close by saying thank you to anyone who took the time to either read the blog, or stayed up with my daily entries. I had a great time and I hope that you enjoyed reading about my adventure.

Thu 14/03/13 22:17
and some of the morning

This morning I headed to the dive shop to drop off the videos of my dive. When I was filming the dive master asked for a copy as well as the others that were on the dive. I felt good to do something for them…since I shortened their dives. ☹ It was my way of saying sorry, and from the reaction of the dive master he was grateful. It made me feel good. The one thing that happened was when I walked into the shop, there was about three people that held out their thumbs, to suggest I was going to go diving again. At that moment I wanted to go diving again so bad. I can actually envision me spending time underwater… up until yesterday I couldn’t.  The problem was that I didn’t bring any cameras and I’ve been accustomed to filming what I do.

  

Speaking of that, I’ve become the techno-geek. I have, in no particular order, a laptop, an iPhone, a Sony prosumer camera, a gopro camera, two tripods, and I use them all the time. I seem to judge what I’m going to do by the equipment I pack with me for the day. To be honest, I don’t think that I like it. Not that long ago I simply grabbed my camera and started walking, now I’m laden down with all sorts of equipment.

  

Today is the last day here and the staff at the hotel have been very nice to me. I wrote something about them earlier but I think that I deleted it before I added it to the blog, but they have really been nice. I don’t know what I seem like to them, but I have almost become a part of their family. I’m starting feel like I’m their rich uncle.

  

I know I’ll write more about how much fun I’ve had here, but I’m so content right now that it only seems appropriate that I mention it now, I really am having a great time!

It’s 8 in the morning on my last day here in Sri Lanka and I’m not looking forward to leaving when the taxi picks me up at 12. It’s probably the best time to leave though because as I write this, I can see someone staring off in the distance towards the surf. It reminds me of how I felt when my feet first touched the beach here… I was in awe of the beauty of everything that I could see, I don’t know if “awe” is the correct word, maybe “dream-like” is better. There was a feeling of, “I can’t believe I’m here.”

  

Yesterday I really didn’t have any plans so I decided to go back to the fish market, it’s where I was when I took the photos of the monitor lizards swimming. Unfortunately I didn’t see any lizards (or anything of interest there), so I decided to walk along the railroad tracks. It sure seemed that I was the only tourist that ever goes into the area. Everywhere I went people were yelling, “hello” towards me, usually followed by, “where are you from?” That is always awesome to be treated so nicely, but sometimes people were saying hello to me from 20+ meters away. At one point an old man (fisherman) stopped me and asked me, in very broken English, to come to his yard, I hesitated, but obliged. He then asked me to take a picture of his son, I hesitated again thinking that he would then try to charge me for the opportunity of photographing his family. Pretty soon I was taking a photo of his wife, and his other son. They asked me to come in a sit with them, but I declined… because I didn’t have an exit plan should things get awkward. Turns out that they did want something from me, they wanted me to send them the photos that I took. Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but it was such a humbling moment to think that they didn’t have a camera and had to ask a stranger to take some photos of their family.

I also finally made a true souvenir run last night. I hate buying things for others since I never know what to buy, but when it’s a “last minute” type of thing it makes buying much easier. There’s no real worrying about the price or if it is the best item to buy, you just buy it. So going last night was the best thing for me to do, almost like going Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve, something that I used to do. For the items that I bought, I probably paid more than I should have, but at least I actually bought something.

One last note, as I was uploading my blog entry the power went out in the city. Not too much of a problem since everything I do is based on batteries, except for the wifi connection at the hotel so I can’t finish the blog entry right now.

It’s so strange how I’m being treated at the hotel, it seems that I’m getting too much attention. I’m not sure why, but I kind of feel uncomfortable how I can’t seem to look up from the computer without seeing someone watching me. I think I’d be happier if the taxi was leaving right now. Speaking of that, the hotel owner told me that her daughter was going to be going with me, I guess I’m paying for it. Also I have been asked by a woman waitress here what my Facebook account was so her daughter could connect with me. It has really been strange.

Wed 13/03/13 22:37
It’s been a lot of fun

Well, this is my last day here hanging around on the beach, watching sunsets, and generally thinking that the world is a great place. In about 24 hours I’ll be heading back to Colombo and to the flight that will take me back to reality. In the last six days I’m come to really understand why some people like to go to a resort for their vacation. Where I am at is by no means a resort, but it’s the closest thing that I have come to in my life. I sleep, eat, and relax at the hotel, the beach I swim at is in front of the hotel, I guess that my last week was just like being at resort.

I really don’t have much to do today except to plan my taxi ride to Colombo for tomorrow, maybe get some souvenirs, and drop of the dive videos to the dive center. Speaking of that, have you ever been embarrassed of something that you did that you wish you could just file as, “oh well, nobody will remember me?” That’s what has been going on in my head about screwing up on the dive yesterday. The only problem is, is that they will have a video of me “screwing up” by going through my air so quickly. It’s not really a major screw up, but having it rattle around in my head for the last day, I have blown it into a major issue.

One last thing about diving, I really had a fun time. Although there wasn’t a lot of sea life, the water was really clear, and most of all I didn’t have any problems with my ear(s) on the second dive, and that is saying a lot. It pretty much means that I can go diving now when I want… well, I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but at least I know that diving is a realistic possibility from now on.

Wed 13/03/13 21:34
I turned out to be “that” guy

It’s early on Wednesday morning. I got up this morning about 6:30, and I’m not really sure what to do with myself. I want a cup of coffee, but the restaurant isn’t open. That leaves me sitting in my room typing on this computer, even though the wifi won’t be on for another half an hour.

  

  

  

Hikkaduwa has been great and I don’t want to leave, but time is getting short. If I’ve done the calculations correctly I leave in two and a half days, that is if I wait to the last possible moment before I leave. There are still some things that I want to do before I leave too, one is to taking a surfing lesson and the other which I plan on doing this morning is to go diving again. My ear is not perfect, but I think it will survive one more dive.

  

Speaking of diving, yesterday as I was sitting in the café drinking a coffee and watching the video that I took while under the water, one of the waiters came over to watch, the next thing I know, there are about 8 people all surrounding me watching the video. One guy was sitting on the armrest of my chair… it was kind of weird, but it was also kind of cool. The crew of the hotel has started to befriend me too, they come and sit at my table (sometimes) just to chat.

  

  

 

I just got back from another dive trip. The water was nearly crystal clear and I had no problems equalizing. I did embarrass myself by nearly running out of air though. I think that I still have enough, but the dive master made me use his alternate hose for the accent. There’s something about the way I breathe that makes me go through more air than most people. Two days, two dives, and I was the first to run out of air each dive. I’m the guy that makes everyone’s dive shorter. They must hate me. 🙁

Tue 12/03/13 02:29
I went scuba diving

Today I’m going scuba diving. I feel it’s appropriate to mention that I’m nervous too. There’s probably a few reasons for my jitters, but most likely it has to do with that I haven’t dove in a quite a while, but even more reason is that the last time I did, I had problems with my ears. For anyone that has never gone diving let me give you a small little lesson in equalizing. When you go to a certain distance under water pressure of the water pushes against you. For the most part you don’t notice it except when it comes to your ears, the pressure pushes on your eardrums and the only way you can reduce it is by clearing your ears, this means equalizing the pressure of the outside to the inside. If a person, like me, who has problems equalizing the pressure it can be very painful, and even damaging to the ears. The last time I went I was almost deaf for about two weeks, well, that’s an exaggeration, I wasn’t deaf, but everything sounded like I was in a tunnel.

  

Well, since I first started writing this this morning, I did go diving. Yay! It was so much fun. I did have problems with my ear trying to equalize and as I writing this my ear feels plugged, and when I talk it sounds like I’m in a cave. Oh well, I did have a blast and to make it even better, I have a full video of it. I am thinking of going again tomorrow too but only if my ear feels better by then.

  

Now I have to figure out what to do with the rest of the day… sipping beers on the beach sounds kind of fun, but so does taking a surfing lesson. ☺

Mon 11/03/13 06:08
and I’m still really enjoying myself

Time is getting short and I have to get some things done before I have to leave in about 4 days. The first is to head to Galle, which I plan on doing in just a few minutes. I’ve already been around the city taking pictures of boats, people, and animals. So although I didn’t take a huge amount of photos, I do have something to post on the blog. Going to Galle should give me more photos to upload to the blog. The other thing that I need to do is go diving, and I’ve made an appointment to go tomorrow morning at 9. I have to say though that I’m nervous about going, so nervous that I was worried that I’d chicken out. I refuse to let that happen though, diving was something that I came here to do. If I didn’t go I think I’d feel like this trip was a let down. Nevertheless, I’m nervous. I haven’t dived in a few years and I’ve never dived when I didn’t have problems with my ears equalizing. This morning I talked to the shop owner and he promised that he’d let me take my time on the dive tomorrow.

  

  

  

I just got back from the excursion to Galle. It took no longer that three hours, and to be honest I don’t feel that I saw the right spots. My driver was a nice guy, but I don’t think he made a very good tour guide, if only because he didn’t speak English very well. He just drove me to a spot and then told me to take some photos… and really he didn’t stop at very many spots. I did get quite a few photos though, and at one stop I saw a “snake charmer” with two cobras and one monkey. The cobras were, well, cobras, but the monkey was the cutest thing I have seen in a long time. He was tiny and you could see the fear in his eyes from the cobras (and of me). I did get to hold him too.