My smiling young friend that sat with me on the train from Nuwara Eliya to Ella. He was very happy and jumped around a lot. He was traveling with his family to visit relatives for the New Year holiday.
Sri Lanka was a country of vibrant and rich colours. This lady in a village near Ella, was stringing her washing below a tree with bright orange flowers, with Ella Peak in the distance along with a eucalyptus tree.
While in Mirissa in the south of Sri Lanka, I went on a whale watching cruise for the morning. We saw a whale - its body, its spout and its tale - all at different times. Not sure if it was the same whale or different whales doing different things at different times. There were more boats than whales out there!
Known as the red mosque, the Jami Ul-Afar mosque is one of the largest and oldest in Colombo. Colombo and Sri Lanka seemed to be a religiously diverse and tolerant country with mosques, Hindu and Buddhist temples and a wide variety of Christian churches in many areas
Street life in Pettah is colorful and busy neighbourhood in Colombo. The unique red and white brick work of Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque dominates the visual skyline. I had a brief morning exploring Colombo and would have loved to have spent more time exploring the markets and streets of this area.
Well almost! I have been Australianising the Sri Lankan towns I pass through as many of the extra long names are diffucult to pronounce and to remember. On Friday the train passed through Watawala in the highlands on my way to Kandy.
Weaving bamboo into a hat, with woven fabric in the background. This lady in the market in Luang Prabang could be seen as a modern multi-tasker. She is selling rice, helping with child minding, weaving a hat and ready to sell some woven cloth.
Students from our sister school - a local Laos elementary school- shared a dancing and singing performance with us at the Pii Mai assembly on Friday. They were soooooo cute!. Lots of colour and action. They were wearing their Pii Mai colours as were the VIS students in the background. Floral shirts everywhere.
Some of my Laos Grade 10 girls performed a traditional dance as part of Friday's Pii Mai celebrations. They were gorgeous with flowers in their hair and richly coloured sinhs and scarfs. Am, Jane, Sassa and Angel were proud to share their culture with the VIS community.
A slightly jarring part of the celebrations was a fashion parade with student from the elementary school. Girls in pink with lipstick, prancing and preening- so much for trying to break gender stereotypes!
The campus was decorated with flowers today in preparation for tomorrow's Pii Mai (Laos New Year) celebrations. There will be flowers, a parade, a water blessing, swimming carnival and lots of throwing of water at people wearing loud Hawaiian type Pi Mai shirts.
Catch a train from the airport!!!!!!!! It was very very easy to catch a train (MRT) from Singapore airport to my hotel. One easy change of line. Easy to buy a pass with credit on FROM a PERSON!!!!!!. It came with 7 SGD credit which lasted the entire weekend, - in from the airport, 3 other train trips and a bus ride.
I have been in Singapore for a conference for two days. Great people and relevant and practical conference sessions. Enjoying the colors and comforts of visiting a cosmopolitan city. Great food - chilli crab by the river at Clarke's Quay last night and Hainese Chicken at a street restaurant tonight.