Mood: Mellow but Motivated
Listening to: My Life would Suck Without you – Kelly Clarkson
After another very nice buffet breakfast, we bid farewell to Kandy. Another long drive found us in Colombo. Harry’s driving became even more erratic and traffic was even worse than Bangalore, if that is even possible.
We stopped for lunch at a very fancy restaurant. Daddy G and I rolled our eyes at each other yet again about the food thing. It was getting a bit much. We went with the buffet as the kids were free here too. I got crab curry with a beautiful crab leg in it to start as we had avoided seafood up until now. Whatever overpriced nonsense the buffet was, this one crab leg made up for it all. The curry was amazing and that crab leg was absolutely glorious. I enjoyed it, curry all over my hands. That is the only way to eat a crab leg. There were lots of yummy vegetarian options too. We got to try some Sri Lankan desserts too, of which some were great and some a tad bit too English for my taste. Treacle Tart anyone? After a hastily gulped green tea at the end (the girls were squirrely and ready to leave. Now, please.) we set out for the hotel. At this point we were kind of frustrated with Harry. The day was only half over and he insisted that Colombo was just a concrete jungle with nothing to see. I doubted that, but I think he was eager to get back to his family in Negombo for the night.
Our hotel, the Taj Samudra, didn’t have driver accommodations, so he was taking a bus trip home for the night, and would return at noon to bring us to the airport the next day. I absolutely loved the Taj Samudra. Daddy G wasn’t so impressed. He thought it was more of a showy, business hotel. Whatever, I never get to stay places like that, so I enjoyed it. More quick checkin, more juice, and we were escorted up to our room. Our room was standard hotel fair but absolutely spotless. We hung out and watched TV for a bit to relax. The wireless here was about 500 rupees per 2 hours, so we just decided to ditch the work all together, since it was only 1 more day anyhow.
Sri Lankans LOVE their elephants.
After we rested up, we decided that it was pool time. The Taj Samudra is currently renovating their pool and it is closed. The Ramada across the street has kindly agreed to let guests swim in their pool instead. Or are being paid a buttload of money to let people use it – I have no idea. We moseyed on across the street and signed into the pool. They were kind enough to give us big fluffy towels to borrow. The pool was small, but mostly empty and had a nice small attached pool for the kiddos.
We returned to the room and showered. We had asked Harry where we could walk around in the evening and he gave some vague wave of his hand and told us that we could walk there, but the hotel grounds were the best place to walk around. Undeterred, we decided to walk next to the ocean, which we could see from our hotel room. The water again was rough and the sand too fresh in Daddy G’s mind to consider a swim, so we just went to the boardwalk. There were lots of Sri Lankans out and about, lots of food stalls selling small eats.
Sri Lankan Sunset. Very Nice.
We enjoyed the sea air and wandered down the walk. We did eventually try to go where Harry was pointing, but ended up not finding anything but more hotels, which really wasn’t all that interesting. There was a military facility near the hotels and there was a LOT of policemen walking around with lots of large guns. We had been warned not to take pictures towards the end and I pretty much pocketed my camera after 15 minutes by the water. We finally got tired of the humidity pouring off the ocean. It was absolutely nuts. By the time we walked back, it was dark and we could see all the moisture in the air blowing by the street lamps. We decided to try the north Indian food option (there were 6 places there to eat, including a coffee shop type thing). They immediately told my husband he would not be seated wearing shorts and would he be interested in them finding him a sarong? I had a very good laugh at his expense before pondering how ridiculous this is. I know you’re a fancy hotel, but I can’t think of any other Indian place in the world that would blink at a man wearing shorts. We took a gander at the expensive menu, determined that there would be nothing the kids would eat except yogurt rice, which was 300 rupees each! All the grownup food was even more silly priced.
We gave back the sarong and went back to our room to regroup. We decided to order sandwiches off the room service menu because no one had any enthusiasm to go out. They brought our food after a half hour (seriously, everything in Sri Lanka was slower paced, except maybe Harry). The general manager called while I was trying to eat my very nice salad to ensure we were comfortably settled. I was pissed at being interrupted from my salad, but Gaurav was insistent on being chatty. After I assured him we were great, thank you!, he hung up. After dinner, the kids passed out and I went to shower.
When I was done, the doorbell rang. I sent Daddy G to answer the door since I wasn’t dressed. He came back in with a puzzled expression and a bottle of wine. I, of course, immediately got excited. I asked him what it was and he replied that it was a gift. This made me insanely happy. Taj Samudra and Gaurav, thank you. I joked with my husband that I’m a cheap date because a bottle of wine will ensure that I absolutely love you. He joked back it might not be so cheap because it take a whole damn bottle of wine for me to get drunk. Whatever. We made sure it was free (seriously. There were chocolates out that I almost ate. 4 chocolates for 400 rupees.), and then popped it open. Well, unscrewed anyways. A free bottle of wine is a big deal for us because wine is so expensive here and we don’t indulge much. I’m not sure what the label was, but it was a Chilean red (!!!). I love Chilean wine and don’t really drink white, so this made my entire week. It was a great bottle of wine. We watched an Ajay Devgan (yes please!) and Akshay Kumar (double yes please!!) movie. I got about ¾ of the way through before passing out happily on the bed.