Somebody knocked on the window of my room. I looked through it. I saw a woman on the porch holding a plate of sliced fruit. ‘Something small for breakfast,’ she probably said in her native Sinhalese language. Maybe she said something else, but I replied with a smile and said ‘istuty’ which means thank you and I took the plate.
The first two weeks spent in the village of Gewalseeay a similar scene repeated every day. The villagers visited the house where we lived, perhaps out of curiosity, or kindness, perhaps out of politeness or because of the saying ‘welcome a guest and you welcome God’. After some time we understood that this was a combination of all of the above, a natural quality of the locals.
Today we are going on a trip to Anuradhapura. Heenkenda put a smile on his face, started his motorbike, and off we go to the ancient royal city. The first stop was at stupas of all sizes. These are dome-shaped Buddhist temples with a small central tower pointing to the sky. We managed to slip through without paying a tourist tax. Our friend and guide told us about the origins of Buddhism, about the nature and purpose of the buildings and about the history of the whole city.
We returned just in time for afternoon tea. We drank strong black tea with milk and sugar and butter biscuits. During the tea we discussed about the history of our countries and deep thoughts of all ages. Around us there were plenty of various tropical birds, cicadas and crickets. We enjoyed the sunset behind the most beautiful trees in the world.
After sunset it was time for shower. But because we were already experienced Sri Lankans, we didn’t go to the bathroom but to a small garden reservoir with fresh water. With a small bucket and pleasant feelings. A shower under the stars. We hoped that no one would turn the light on... But that would probably not work anyway, power supply in Sri Lanka is not very stable.
After an amazing dinner made by Damianti - Heenkenda's wife we spoke about the day. We went to bed early because we were planning a bicycle trip the next day...