|Independence Memorial Hall|
|The former Parliament building of Sri Lanka.|
After finishing the official work roamed around the city accompanied by a local Sri Lankan friend, who showed me some of the most happening spots in Colombo such as Cinnamon Grand mall and so on. The next day when my work had ended earlier than expected I first decided to take a half day tour around Colombo in an open air bus. But on this particular day it had been canceled for some unknown reasons. So then decided to go for a REALLY REALLY long walk. Decided to explore the city on foot and armed with google maps and gps started the exploration.
Explored the Independence Memorial Hall and by the time I reached there it was beautifully lit. After that explored the Viramahadevi Park and so on and capturing a lot of nitty gritty images in my camera. One thing I observed is the general sense of traffic awareness and the respect they give to fellow pedestrians. When it happened for the first time I was really surprised. Was standing by the road on a zebra crossing, waiting for the right moment to cross it, an SUV came and suddenly stopped and the driver waved me to cross and the other vehicles following this SUV also stopped to allow me a passage :P. First I thought it might be a one off incident , but when the same happened almost 3 times and once involving an auto-rickshaw you knew for sure that this is not a mere coincidence. The night walk was probably the best thing I did in Colombo getting the real vibes of the city. In total I walked close to 12 kms on that particular night :P.
The next day was May day and unfortunately I had not got a flight out of Colombo. Hence had to stay an extra day in Colombo. May day in Colombo means a day filled with parades through the major roads of the city. Therefore for the first half of the day just chilled out at the hotel. In the afternoon took an auto-rickshaw (called tuk-tuk in here) to the famous Buddhist temple Gangarama temple. Took close to an hour exploring the temple, which was pretty good. After this the tuk tuk guy took me to a so called gem museum, which was a pathetic marketing ploy to get people to buy Sri Lankan gems. Somehow wriggled out of it without buying anything.
|May Day Parade|