6 months in Sri Lanka

November 8th marked 6 months of living in Sri Lanka. I’ve already been here for half a year, which is 1/4th of my contract and intended time here. (I am approximately 1/4th of the way through my life as well, as a fun side note).

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Contemplating 25% of life

Do I feel 25% more prepared to deal with the heat, the dust, learning to teach, living alone, starting from scratch, improvising everything; traveling, exploring alone, meeting new people, not losing the old ones; taking tuk tuks, bargaining for pots, cycling at night, paying all my bills; paying too much for wine, remembering names, learning streets, seeing the South, North, East, being at home away from home? Have I done 25% of what I intended to do? (I haven’t even scratched the surface)

25% more content has been added to my every day life, and if anything, I am still processing. Moving has been 100% what I hoped it would be and 120% I was afraid it would be.

Luckily I only considered 1% of the fears (“What if it sucks?”) and came anyway.

All things considered, a lot has happened that I am pleased about. Here are some highlights:

* * *

Of course, lots of time was spent at school – Academy of Design, or AOD. I ran some workshops, taught a complete semester, saw a batch of great new designers graduate:

Took part in a fashion show – shocking!

Also watched a few – part of Sri Lanka Design Festival, organized by AOD:

1000 shades of green and more. This is by far the most lush and alive country I have ever seen. Things grow everywhere – lose a seed, you’ll find a tree.

Along the coast south of Colombo, be it 20 minutes or two hours away, are countless beaches with distinctive features and personalities. I got to see a few:

Got a little lost hiking, camping and catching some incredible views of Lanka’s Hill Country.

Day trips both in and outside of Colombo, some with my mom, my first visitor

Being predominantly Buddhist, Sri Lanka celebrates a monthly Poya day – full moon celebration. Some are more significant than others, such as Vesak in May, the Buddha’s day of birth, death, and enlightenment; and Perahera in August celebrated with great pomp, fire and elephants in Kandy:

Colombo is a dense city but luckily it has some great chill out spots:

In 6 months I managed to take quite a few trains

Copious amounts of delicious foods have been eaten. The following grid doesn’t even cover a tenth – pictures are in short supply because the food was generally eaten more promptly than photographed.

 Everything happened so fast. There are so many more things to see, eat, learn about. Only thing is to keep going – and take slightly nicer photos  😮 Thanks for checking it out.

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