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Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Tuesday 22nd November - Arrival

The plane landed at around 1pm Sri Lankan time, which is 6.30 am British time. We couldn't sleep on the flight, which means that so far we've been up 24hrs, and looking in the mirror is not a good idea.

Baggage collection, immigration, being welcomed by the Voyager team and the bus trip to the port took another hour or so.  Walking out of the air conditioned airport into the Sri Lankan heat was like walking into an oven, and our first impressions of the Colombo is that is it a very big city - a mixture of squalor and high rise banks and hotels.

Our aim was to stay awake as long as possible so our body clocks could quickly adapt to Asian time, so we had tea, unpacked, cleaned up and then went to sit on the deck to drink more tea before an early dinner.  As we arrived at the teas station it had started to rain, and we thought the young lass singing on the pool deck was maybe singing to herself.  No so, a few hardened tourists had taken the sheltered tables around the deck to enjoy a drink outside.  We joined them, watching the rain and listening to the singer.

Monsoon season in South West Sri Lanka starts in December,  but no one told the clouds above us.  The rain steadily increased to "chucking it down in buckets" and the lightning started.

And it was absolutely awesome! I don't ever remember lightning anything like it before.  As well as lighting up the sky in great sheets, it forked down to the city with the loudest ear deafening cracks I've heard,  The rain soaked the decks and started to threaten the safety of sound system electrics, but the singer just moved further back into her stage and carried on.

Peter and I loved it. Half an hour that we will carry forward in our memories for a very long time.

The storm quietened just a little, and the singer finished and it was time for dinner.  We sat in the Bistro watching the strobe lighting of the storm flash and flicker outside, congratulating ourselves on the fact we felt pretty awake. 15 minutes later, we looked at each other with blurry eyes and declared we couldn't keep them open any longer so we were off too bed.

Tomorrow we spend our first proper day in Sri Lanka.  We've not got any tours, so we'll probably just take a walk into town.  I think I would be excited if I wasn't so tired.

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