Quiet Appreciation - Final Thoughts on Sri Lanka

Colombo Travel Blog

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Family party..just at the spure of the moment

As I sit here on my last day in Sri Lanka, I cant believe a whole month has passed! I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here, I almost dont want to leave. As I said previously Sri Lanka is like a home away from home, so its always sad when you have to leave.


Quiet Appreciation the title of this blog entry and a phrase that sums up my visit to Sri Lanka this time.  “Quiet” because people here might not always see it or hear it from me, but trust me appreciation for everything Sri Lanka represents is there.

Aunt and Cousin.


Being a little older now on my fourth visit, you tend to see things a little differently then when you were younger.  Things that were not as important before are more important now.  I got a taste of it 10 years back when I visited, but this time around I felt it more then ever, family. 


Quiet appreciation for my family.  I say this because around family in times of reminiscing, as I mentioned I just sit back and listen to the stories. Some may think Im a bit quiet here but its not done purposely, usually all I can do in these sessions is be the catalyst, be the one to ask questions about years gone by.  In Sri Lanka I always ask a lot of questions :)


When surrounded by family like this all the time I always get this feeling of unconditional love.

My dad trying to be a Kandian dancer.
  Much of my family has only seen me a few times in my life, but you would never think it by the amount of love and support each of them give me.  Its such a great feeling, family is a great thing.


I think thats what it is about Sri Lanka, and a lot of the Asian countries Ive visited (yes China included), a feeling that something is different here. The difference being family is paramount, family is the most important thing to people. Traditions and culture are what keep the family structure alive in this part of the world and for that matter everywhere outside of  North American society.


In North American society I dont think the same sense of family is there.  Maybe Im making a big generalization, but think about, for example, when you visit a retirement home in North America, how often do you see a person of Asian (Indian or Oriental) descent in there? Very rarely is the answer.  The reason I know is family.  Family takes care of each other, the parents take care of the children when they are young, and the children take care of the parents when they become old. Every part of life here in Sri Lanka has a foundation in tradition and family. 


This land, this country, I have a quiet appreciation for and the promise it has.  I keep talking about promise, because as youve seen from my blog entries, there is a wealth of history to this country, literally thousands of years.  It is covered in ancient ruins, rainforest, tea estates and home to wild elephants, crocodiles and leopards.  Moreover its home to all four of the worlds major religions; although a predominantly a Buddhist country, for the most part, people have got along here despite their differences (present era excluded). This country I know is better than it has been in the last 30 years of war.  Appreciation for this country is why I put more details then I normally have in my blog entries, I take pride in this country and want it to flourish like it did long ago when it was a centre for trade and religious thought. 


In the past few months since the war has ended things are changing, changing for the better I think.  Yes there are still underlying issues that need to be resolved, but the people are flocking back in droves, expats and foreigners. My father told me the flight he arrived on from Germany was fully packed, with 85% of the people being foreigners.  That's great and I hope it continues, because tourism is one of the major industries here. In fact (watch out, plug for the Sri Lankan economy), this is the place to invest in the next few years. Now I'm no economist, but postwar countries always go through periods of re-growth and building of infrastructure. The IMF saw the potential too, and gave a $2.6 billion loan to Sri Lanka. The Colombo Stock Exchange's benchmark index has shown the second-best performance worldwide in the past three months, according to Bloomberg (second to Indonesia I believe). So now is the time for Sri Lanka. Everyone sing that national anthem with me! ;)    


Next up, Nepal!


P.S. I wrote this entry 6 days ago and only now did I get the chance to upload it.  I’m still here in Sri Lanka. My father became very ill just before I was to leave for Nepal, so I stayed here to be with him. Thankfully in the last few days he has got a better.  I’ll update soon.


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Family party..just at the spure of…
Family party..just at the spure o…
Aunt and Cousin.
Aunt and Cousin.
My dad trying to be a Kandian danc…
My dad trying to be a Kandian dan…
photo by: wanderingluster