• Tara B. Vasi

Week 2 and 3 Sri Lanka: December 2nd through December 16th. What really happened PART 3

Updated: Dec 30, 2019

Monday, December 2nd is my birthday. Chamara wishes me a happy birthday. He buys me a cake with a candle and presents it to me. I say thank you. It was a kind gesture. I don’t leave the villa all day. I try to help this week, but the bug bite is painful. He has a healer come for an exorcism because he hit a cat with his van the night before.

I had to go to the hospital and have surgery on my infected mosquito bite. He watched the whole thing. Them cutting me and digging out the infection. He put his hand on my head and it was comforting.

I stayed in my room most of the week because I was in pain. My room only came with a top sheet and smelled like mold. I asked him for a blanket but I never got one. I didnt have any hot water. Even though I was in pain, I loved being alone in my overly moist smelly free room that week because I felt safe.

Christy came for what was going to be a week but ended up being more like ten days. I drove with Chamara the two hours to the airport to pick her up. At no point before the trip did she communicate with Chamara. She was originally going to come for the yoga retreat, so I was her contact, but now she was following his program. He had me collect her money. He had me relay any program details. He had me do just about everything with her. She was a sweet woman and even though it seemed like a lot for me to do, I was trying to get comfortable in the new “assistant” role and prove how valuable I was to the program. While Cristy was visiting, Chamara and I were setting up the villa in preparation for three German business partners to come and check out his program to potentially send their volunteers. Everything revolved around getting ready for their important visit.

He was concerned I wouldn’t be able to teach Cristy yoga because of my bite. I did anyway even though I wasn’t cleared by the doctors yet.

There were many miscommunications during this week and Cristy was there to witness it all. Her and I even started joking about it. I would ask Chamara a question, he would answer it, and then in the next sentence, completely contradict what he just said. English wasn’t his first language of course, so started trying to over communicate, asking for multiple incredibly clear questions, and ask for multiple confirmations, just so that we would be on the same page. It didn’t work.

During one meal he joined, he got emotional with Cristy and I and talked about how so many people were taking advantage of him and how lonely he is. He said he wanted to get married and have a family, but he is working so hard he doesn’t do anything social and can’t meet people. We tried to comfort him.

If there was a lull in the day for rest, he wouldn’t let me rest, and would instead pull me to run errands with him, where I would just sit in the car and get car sick while he whipped around Sri Lanka screaming on his phone. I would tell him I didnt want to go, but he would open the passenger door and say come come come and push me inside. If he noticed I was upset, he would stop at the store, and throw an ice cream cone in my lap.

Peanut got super sick one day and the regular vet office was closed, so we had to go to a different vet. The vet over medicated the puppy and Peanut died. Im not blaming anyone for that, but we should have taken him to the vet much much earlier.

At one point towards the end of Cristys visit, I pulled him to the side and told him I needed some alone time. We had just come back from a weekend trip and all the reckless driving had pushed me to my edge. I didnt even want to go on the trip in the first place, but he didnt want to leave me alone in the villa. He charged me $200 for the trip. The whale watch was shitty. He wouldn’t stop when we needed to use the bathroom. He wouldn’t stop places so that we could get out and look around. He rushed us through every attraction. He blamed us for the traffic and the rain because we took too long at an attraction. The whole trip was not fun in the slightest.

I tried to set some boundaries. I told him that I can’t be expected to eat every meal, and do every project with the volunteers. I told him that I was serious about my car sickness. That he needs to slow down. That I can’t be feeling sick everyday and every time we drive somewhere. I told him that if I can’t drive with him then there is no point for me to stay. That its not working out for me like it is. I need to change my room. I need him to work on his communication with me. If he wants me to help him and help run his program for the next three months, he needs to be better about telling me what its going on. I need him to answer my questions. And I need him to stop fucking hitting the dogs!

I think this was the first time someone actually called him out on anything.

He didnt talk to me for the rest of the day.

Then that night, something seriously shifted. He was extremely kind and playful, flirty even. He had never acted like that before with me. He started treating me like he actually valued my existence. he didn’t want me to leave. Like for whatever reason, me laying it all out for him like that turned him on or something.

He slowed down while driving. He stopped texting and driving. If I wanted to stop at a store, he would actually stop. I was impressed by his efforts and how my feedback resinated with him. I was thinking things would get better. Cristy couldnt believe how dysfunctional out business relationship was and even she was confused as to what my actual role was. He couldnt believe that I wasn’t getting paid.

He one armed hugged me a few times, pulling me in, but I laughed it off.

He showed me a text message conversation between him and another yoga teacher we were talking to. The day before, Chamara decided he didnt want her to come and asked me to message her, so I messaged her on instagram telling her we didnt need her for the season. His text message conversation with her showed a screen shot of my message to her on IG, and her saying, “Is she the boss now? You shouldn’t let women run his business”. Then he responded to her saying “ok fine you can come.” I said WTF Chamara, we decided yesterday that she wasn’t, and that makes me look really bad, like I made it up. Why didnt you back me up? He told me that I was cute when I was jealous. I said no, your response just discredits my role, but its your business, you can invite whoever you want…

The day before Cristy left, Chamara lifted one of the alligator fish from the pool so that he could change the water. He pulled a muscle in his neck. He had cream similar to Icy Hot and he asked me to rub it on his neck. I agreed like a fucking idiot. He asked for me to continue to massage his shoulders and back. I said “No, Sorry, I can’t.” He asked “Why not? It feels so good”, but I said “I put the cream on, that’s what you needed. I’m tired. I am going to bed.”

I ran to my bedroom. Ugh. WTF. What an awkward situation this is. What am I going to do?


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