Tuesday, June 26, 2012

'Head-umbrella', Sri Lanka.

This handy head-umbrella costs Rs100/- in Sri Lankan Rupees. It is of Chinese make. It fastens by some straps to the periphery of the head. I suppose a strong gust of wind would blow the umbrella away. I suppose you could have a 'Chin-strap' to retain it, but then there is the danger of the wearer himself being blown away in a heavy wind.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Black pepper -Piper nigrum, Sri Lanka

Black pepper - Pepper nigrum, the woody creeper
The yellow flower stalk and berries on the tree
The harvested berries awaiting drying in the sun when they will wrinkle up and turn b lack

Black pepper, 'Gammiris' -S, 'Milaku' - T, has been an export from Sri Lanka from ancient times. The term 'Gammiris' means 'Gamey Miris' translating as 'village-grown pepper'. This is to distinguish it from 'Kochchi Miris' brought from 'Kochin, Goa' during Portuguese times in the 16th Century Present Era. This latter was initially brought from South America by the Spaniards. It was introduced by the Portuguese to South Asia. The value of pepper in Europe in Medieval times could be gauged by the fact that a few pounds of it was worth a King's ransom.

Friday, June 22, 2012

A 'Bulath' tray for a visitor, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

Preparing a betel tray - cutting the arecanut
In the villages in Sri Lanka the traditional offering of a 'betel' tray to a visitor to a house is still practised. The picture shows the contents of the tray. Running clockwise from top there are the following item:- Arecanut cutter - 'Giraya' S, 'Paakku vetty' T -, arecanut pieces, lime in a polythene satchet, a cluth of betel leaves and a twist of cured tobacco leaf all laid on a 'pankola thatiya' S, 'Olai ththatty' T. Out of these tobacco, lime and arecanut are implicated in the causation of cancer.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Rose bud, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

A rose-bud blooming in our garden

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Railway at Kosgama.

Railway station, Kosgama.
Railway line near Kosgama.
Kosgama was a big station during the early days of the Colombo to Opanaike Kelani Valley Line. Now the line runs from Colomb Fort to Avissawella and is converted to broad gauge.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Rambuttans for sale, Kaluaggala, Sri Lanka

Rambuttans are aplenty for sale by the side of busy highways now in the month of June. They cost anything from Rs.5 to Rs.10 each.


Monday, June 18, 2012

Lotus flowers, Village stream, Nawagamuwa, Sri Lanka.

A village stream
Flowers growing in the stream
These flowers are plucked and sold fresh at the 'Nawagamuwa' Paththini Dewale' to worshippers for pooja.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Oriental Band, 'Janadhipathy Vidyalaya, Avissawella.

The Oriental Bands of schools in present day Sri Lanka are a big attraction. Their colouful costumes and lilting music make a wonderful scene.

Web-links to click on:-


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Artifacts in the museum at 'Wavurukannala' Buddhist temple.

The old printing press.
Respect for the Crown in 1955.

Friday, June 15, 2012

'Apaaya' - Hell as depicted in Wavurukannala temple, Thangalla, Sri Lanka.

Punishment for those encouraging 'cock-fighting'
'Yamapallas' dragging a female in 'Apaaya' 
The 'Wavurukannala' Buddhist temple has a whole series of drawings and images depicting 'Apaaya' - Hell.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

'Wavurukannala' Buddhist temple, Tangalle, Sri Lanka.

Old building
Facade of the old temple
Steps of the main entrance

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

'Yellow-billed Babbler', Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

One of the noisiest birds in the garden. They gather in groups and and have the common name 'Seven sisters'. The Sinhalese name is 'Demelichcha' and the Tamil name 'Pulinil'. They act as guardians to the squirrels and give a cry of alarm when cats or snakes are around. Watch the video with the sound turned up to hear the racket that they make.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Langurs raiding a 'Rambuttan' tree for its fruits, Meepe, Sri Lanka.

'Rambuttan' trees produce fruits which fetch Rs.2 to Rs.5 wholesale and Rs.10/- each for consumers. Thieves rob the produce. Bats, squirrels and various birds eat part of the produce. Langurs raid the plantation to enjoy the fruits. The owners do various ruses to prevent these acts. In earlier days empty tin cans were tied to the top of the trees and were made to rattle by pulling a string from a hut close by to scare away bats at night. Transistor radios were put on full volume and tied to the top of the trees at night. Recently I heard that domestic dogs are put in a cage and tied to the branches of the trees to bark and chase away thieves and pests. I saw a keeper using stones on a catapult to chase away the monkeys.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Western coastline by railway, Sri Lanka.

A wonderful journey in Sri Lanka  - to travel the western coastline by rail.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

'Ranga Dhahaena', Wathupitiwala, Sri Lanka.

The following videos are from a cultural programme performed by the staff of the Wathupitiwala Base Hospital, Sri Lanka.

'Api maraenney nae'

'Dumbara menike'

Saturday, June 9, 2012

'Nongu' at Kithulgala, Sri Lanka.

King Coconut and unripe palmyra fruits to eat 'nongu'.
Note the Kithul honey in bottles and leaf wrapped Kithul jaggery on sale on the table. Note also the 'camp-bed and chair of the vendor.
The road at Kithulgala


Friday, June 8, 2012

'Zesta tea shop, Watawala, Sri Lanka.

Tea-cup and saucer sign
Entrance to the tea shop
One view of the garden in front


Video of trains on the opposite hill:-

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Devon waterfalls, Pathana, Hatton, Sri Lanka.

This waterfall is visible from the Thalawakelle to Hatton road at Pathana. 
The tea-center.
Dr. Siva and a view from near the tea center


Earlier web-photo:-

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

St. Clair's waterfall, Thalawakelle, Sri Lanka.

This waterfall is downstream from the Upper Kothmale dam. Water is released from the sluice gates of the dam on and off, to keep the waterfall going.

Video at present:-

Video of the waterfall before completion of the dam:-

See an earlier picture taken before the completion of the Kothmale Dam:-

Monday, June 4, 2012

Upper Kothmale Dam, Thalawakelle.

Upper Kothmale Dam, Thalawakelle - Hatton road.
Construction site of the dam


Sunday, June 3, 2012

Somerset Estate, Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka.

'Peduruthalagale' the tallest mountain of Sri Lanka.
Valley of Somerset Estate.
Tea halt at Somerset estate near turnoff to Radella.
Coming on the lower road from Nuwara-Eliya to Thalawakella I took these pictures.


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Sports at Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka.

Bicycle rentals
Boats for hire on Gregory's Lake.


Friday, June 1, 2012

Alpine Hotel, Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka.

The front of the 'Alpine Hotel'
The restaurant
A wood-burning fire-side
The 'Pub' in the hotel.
The garden in the front of the hotel
Alpine Hotel has 60 odd rooms and has all the necessary comforts. Twin beds cost about Rs.7000/- SL.