Hello from enchanting Ella! I am nestled high atop a hill, in the middle of a tea plantation, in an old rehabilitated plantation house called The Secret Ella. It truly is, a secret tucked away between an organic garden that fed us our delicious local dinner (jackfruit, kale, beans, eggplant, dal, rice), and hillsides filled with green that seems to breathe forever.
Our drive from Colombo was gorgeous. I couldn't fully participate in oohing and aahing at it as much as I'd have liked to because of my pesky inner ear. Nonetheless, I got to take in rusty red cliffs peppered with waterfalls, breathing in 5,000 feet high fresh air (hello, Denver!) from above the clouds, beautiful temples, kind people (they stop at cross walls for pedestrians, wave thanks when you let them pass, and smile just like that), and catch up with sweet Bua and Phuphaji!
My brief tryst with Colombo was amazing. We definitely need to go back to this kinder, emptier, cleaner, nicer, calmer, more pedestrian friendly version of Mumbai or Chennai. My taxi driver from the airport was kind, chatty. The roads were smooth, well maintained. We had some fun this morning playing hide and seek at breakfast and it was a comfortable start to our trip.
On our way, we saw Pattharamunna, the administrative capital; many lakes, streams, rivers; their national tree in its autumn glory; towns and villages like Horana; and stopped to eat lunch and entertained the staff by asking for hot food with no raw additions, etc. etc. ;)
We had a lovely walk in the evening among crickets and unidentified amphibians, and enjoyed a beer and martini high above treetops and among clouds. We rode on a narrow dirt road in an auto (the hotel's free shuttle service) and tucked into a delicious dinner before a little tryst eh a baby lizard. Nothing our private butler Herath couldn't handle ;) (ummm, remember that night in Arenal and your brave combat with the lizard? : )
I miss you,