Saturday, January 28, 2012

Landscaping at 'Amba Sevana', Ussapitiya, Sri Lanka.

'Amba Sevana', Ussapitiya, Sri Lanka.

Wedding reception hall situated in a renovated old 'Walauwwa''. The 'Walawwa' belonged to a Rathwaththe I was told by the reception clerk.

Friday, January 27, 2012

'Amba Sevana', Ussapitiya on the Aranayake road.

A 'Walawwa' - a stately home - was bought by a hotel chain and renovated to act as a reception hall for weddings. Here are two pictures I took there.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Road - Haputhale to Beragala, Sri Lanka.

The road from Haputhale to Beragala is one of the most scenic sites in Sri Lanka. Here are two pictures I took on this road.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Flowers in our garden

Two of the brightly coloured flowers in our home garden in January 2012, at Avissawella, Sri Lanka. In the early 1960s I got a beautiful picture of a red rose. A female student seated next to me expressed a wish to own it. I gave it to her. The next day another female student wanted a similar copy. Now I do these photos myself.

Scarlet Minivet, Male, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

A beautiful bird but quick to take flight and hide among the branches high up.
See a video of the above:-

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Washing linen and bathing, Kelany Ganga.

The daily ritual of washing up and bathing in the Kelany Ganga is a time-old pastime of the villagers in this area. This river was navigable. The Portuguese, Dutch and British conquerors would travel up to Kosgamam by boat from Colombo. This was the first part of the journey to the Kingdom of Kandy. 

Saturday, January 21, 2012

'Pirith' ceremony, Eheliyagoda, Sri Lanka.

 Invoking the blessings of the Gods, the drumming and flute playing, the participants and preparing for the offering of betel leaves to the Buddhist priests, to initiate the 'Pirith' ceremony

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Pirith ceremony, Eheliyagoda, Sri Lanka.

Lighting oil lamps to get the blessings of the Gods and seated before the Pirith Mandapaya at the home of the Balawardenas at Eheliyagoda, Sri Lanka.
Please click on each of the web-links below to video snips of its beginning:-

'Brown Shrike', Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

We saw this 'Brown Shrike' - Lanius cristatus - also called the 'Philippine Shrike' at the edge of the Sithawake free trade zone, Avissawella, Sri Lanka. I used a Fujifilm HS20 EXR with a 30X zoom to capture these pictures.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Kelany Ganga at Aswaththe, Puwakpitiya, Sri Lanka.

The peace and serenity of the gently flowing waters of the Kelany Ganga is seen in this photo. This river can become a raging muddy torrent after rains in the central hills of Sri Lanka.

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Kelani Ganga at Aswaththe near Puwakpitiya, Sri Lanka.

People bathing in the river at Aswaththe, Sri Lanka.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Demmodara railway line loop, Sri Lanka.

The descent from Bandarawela to Badulla is very steep. The railway line takes a loop around a mountain. It circumbulates the top of a mountain and passes through a tunnel in the same mountain below the first circuit. This is the famous 'Demmodara loop'. You can see the top of the mountain where the railway is making its first circuit in these two pictures which I took on a trip to Badulla.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Two 'Moon stones' - 'Sandakadapahana' S, Kelaniya Vihare, Sri Lanka.

The stepping stone is quite common at the entrance to quite a few 'vihares' in present day Sri Lanka. The 'Moon-stone' was an object of veneration for the adherents of the 'Mahayana' sects in the early days of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. It represented the progressive advancement in the circles of existence till the center of Nirvana was reached. This object of veneration was symbolically degraded as a stone to step on, by the Theravada purists, according to the Mahayanists. But it still survives as an aesthetically pleasing piece of stone sculpture. I saw these two pieces at the Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara being stepped on, by devotees on the way to the inner sanctum.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Victoria Dam, Adikarigama, Sri Lanka.

The massive Victoria Dam, built in the form of an 'egg-shell' - double convex shape, on British aid, holds back the waters of the Mahaweli Ganga at Adikarigama, Sri Lanka. The dammed up water runs through a tunnel and powers turbines to generate electricity for the national grid. Completed in the 1980s it has already paid back all the loans taken to build the dam. Photo by Queenie V.

'Black-winged Stilts, Avissawella. Sri Lanka.

'Black-winged Stilts' - Himantopus himantopus - at a pond in Avissawella, Sri Lanka. The male has a black wing and the female has a brownish wing. They are standing on one leg and watching the water for fish. What an adorable pair. The lower picture shows a lonely bachelor.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

'Barn Swallow' - Hewainna, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

Swallows are very difficult to photograph. I was lucky to get this shot on a cold day just being warmed by the early morning sun. The bird must have been 'sun-bathing' and getting warm. Click on the video-link below to see it not disturbed by a passing motor-cycle.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Rainbow in the Dumbara valley, Sri Lanka.

There is a legend which says that you will find a pot full of gold at the end of a rainbow. This picture of a rainbow was taken by Queenie V. The valley was far away and inaccessible to make any effort in that direction.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The watchers of the sunset, Galle-face beach, Colombo Sri Lanka.

It is a daily ritual and every day a new sight meets the eye. Photo by Queenie V.

The Galleface Promenade and the new Pier, Sri Lanka.

Fun and frolicking with the breezes blowing on ones face, surely this is the way life has to be lived. Photo by Queenie V.

Monday, January 2, 2012

White-rumped Munia stationary and in flight, Hewainna, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

The White-rumped Munia - Lonchura striata - feeds on the weeds growing in shrub jungle. Usally about five to six stay to gether and are very brisk in their movements. Please watch a video of it in action by clicking on the web-address below:-

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Asian Paradise Flycatcher, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

Male and female Asian Paradise Flycatchers (Terpsiphone paradisi). Photos taken in our garden at Avissawella, Sri Lanka. They come to pick termites from an earth embankment. I also took a rather blurred video of the female yawning and stretching her limbs just like a human being. You can see this by clicking on the following web address:-

An additional video for you to enjoy:-