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  • Tara B. Vasi

Day 4 Sri Lanka (54): Galle Fail, Star heart

Updated: Dec 1, 2019


Vera has her last day at the kindergarten and Chamara and I work around the villa, potting plants, feeding the koi fish, brainstorming for the season.

We take the two smallest puppies, my puppy, and one of the six that is much younger, and head to the vet for rabies vaccinations and a check up. Along the way, Chamara tells me that the puppy almost died a few weeks ago when he came to the villa and he got his head stuck in the fence and Chamara got his head out and tried CPR but had no luck. He took him to the vet and he performed CPR for 30 minutes before finally reviving him. I have been calling my little puppy Peanut because he is so tiny and I am considering naming this other puppy Cashew, because he is a light brown color. Though both of their names could definitely be lucky. Or mud and fence. These two puppies are definitely my favorite.

We have an appointment at 11am, but the vets not there, so we turn around and go home

I take photographs at the villa and do some yoga on the third floor patio overlooking the lake. The weather is hot and muggy and my feet burn on the black mat. I will definitely not being doing yoga up there again mid day! But those views, OMG. Peanut came with me and watched my yoga practice from the comfort of a towel bed and a patch of shade.

We plan a day trip to Galle. Chamara stays at the villa to work and Chamara’s cousin and uncle lead the adventure. She speaks some English, and the uncle doesn’t speak any. We take the train for an hour and half to Galle.

Come to find out, we only have 45 minutes to spend in Galle. I wonder why we planned the trip at all if we travel 3 hours for 45 minutes of sightseeing. I didn’t even have time to take a picture.

We rush to get to the overlook tower on the coast and the entire 45 minutes is extremely uncomfortable. I am unable to communicate with anyone and it feels like I am being herded with hand signals. I tell the three others to go ahead without me, that I need a break, and I dip into a cafe for a coconut iced coffee to avoid the rushed and angry sightseeing. I see them on the train, which is a relief because that means I successfully found my way onto the right train to Balapitiya.

Maybe I will go back to Galle on my own some other time and take a little bit more time to sightsee in a fashion that is more my style.

We have dinner and separate to our respective bedrooms before 8pm. Its down pouring. I play with puppy and try not to pick at his dry skin.



I notice he has a a white star on his chest and for ten minutes I analyze all the potential dog names that could incorporate the star, but fail, and go back to Peanut…. Or mud…. Or coffee… My feet throb and are swollen because of all of the mosquito bites I have accumulated in the last few days. The rain is pounding and the one million dogs in the quarter mile radius are barking. The thunder and lighting starts. Its late and dark, but I can still feel sweat droplets form in between my boobs and on my brow.

I do my best to not overwhelm my mind with “What the fuck am I doing here?” thoughts based on the one not so enjoyable chunk of the day. Was I just being a brat? Do I hate this?

I try so hard to not be upset, but realize that, I have hit a travel wall, and know its just healthier if I accept it and give into how I feel, instead of try to be tough about it, like I do so often.

The truth is, I am bound to feel uncomfortable and overwhelmed at points while traveling. I’m only human. It’s ok. I haven’t been in my own country for about two months. People are different here and it’s not what I am used to. I try to slow down. I am still getting used to the Sri Lankan land and Sri Lankan the culture. I don’t know anyone here. Chamara is the only one that speaks English well. I don’t speak Sri Lankan, and I don’t even know if that’s even what they call their language.

I dont feel the need to hold back tears. Sometimes being out of your comfort zone can be empowering, and other times it can be just, well, un-fucking-comfortable.

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