Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year Everyone!

Man, another year has gone by like a Cheetah on steroids. I just realized that we've finished with a decade too. Remember all those paranoid talks way back in 1999 about how the world is going to hell come 2000? Well surprise, surprise, we are still standing here at the end of 2010. I have a feeling that we'll still be here on January 01 2013 as well.

Found this interesting chart @

Anywhoo, here's wishing you all a happy new year filled with joy and prosperity.


(Image of Bugs from here:

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Nursery Rhymes are such fun...

to mess with.

Haven’t done one of these in ages.

Disclaimer: All characters are fictional. Any resemblance to any person living or dead is not my problem.

three men in a tub
as to what they did
Shhh... Don't ask don't tell

The religious nuts were pretty outraged
What a scandal in our town
Placards waving they came in droves
To get the three out of the Tub

The Butcher, the baker, the candlestick-maker
were quite unfazed by all the hate
Into the water they put the Tub
and sailed away on the Great Lakes

Image stolen from here

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Elephants @ Kaudulla

Went on a little trip to Habarana last week, and the highlight of it was a safari at Kaudulla national park. Because of the rains, the tracks were all nice and muddy, so it was like taking part in a 4X4 challenge as well.

Kaudulla Reserve is a comparatively smaller than some of the other parks in Sri Lanka, with an area of only 70 sq. km. It was designated as such in April of 2002, and includes the area surrounding the Kaudulla tank. The tank is in fact one of the oldest in the country, built by King Mahasen, between 275 – 301 AD.

We were lucky in that there was a big herd of Elephants, maybe numbering about 50, gathered at the tank. They seemed calm enough that the jeeps were able to get very close. Could it be that they are intrigued by us as we are of them? I can just imagine them going, “Another set of stupid humans coming this way boys. Just ignore them and they’ll go away”

Yum Yum - They pick up a clump of grass and keeps hitting against their legs to get rid of the dirt.

Extended Family

Heading Back home

Mama, Hide me from the sun

Dude, who put dirt on me back? It ain't funny.

Hey, where'd everyone go?

A little dip in the pool before lunch

Me pretty yes? (Painted stork)

Get my good side

Whoa, is that a rabbit i see?
(not sure what the bird is. Please feel free to comment. Tx)

Keeping an eye on the interlopers

Me see far... (again, not sure what the bird is. Please feel free to comment. Tx)

His Majesty, the King

Monday, November 15, 2010


Alert: Boring history post ahead

Went to Polonnaruwa a couple of weekends back, main reason being to attend a homecoming of an office friend, but made it into a sightseeing trip as well. Unfortunately we couldn’t to a very thorough tour since we were bit pressed for time.

Polonnaruwa gets its importance as one of several capital cities in the history of Sri Lanka. It was also known as “Kandawarupitiya” during the 2nd century BC, after the fact that King Dutugemunu had his main camp there during his campaign against King Elara.

The first kingdom of Anuradhapura, which lasted for more than 1500 years, lost its glory after 1017 AD, due to the invasion from the South Indian Chola Empire. However, even before this, Polonnaruwa enjoyed status as a second city, and sometimes as the capital city. The first king to reign there was King Agbo VII durin 667 – 685 AD.

After the invasion, two Chola kings by the name of Raja Raja and Rajendra, father and son, ruled Sri Lanka from Polonnaruw, for a period of 77 years, from 993 to 1070 AD. They were basically bad-asses and the oppressed people got fed up with them. So they rallied around a Prince called Keerithi and supported him to get rid of the invaders. Price Keerthi was crowned as King Vijyabahu I, or Vijayabahu the Great. He reigned for 40 years and was followed by 20 rulers, 18 Kings and 2 Queens, ensuring the glory of Polonnaruwa till 1232 AD, when it fell due to a Kalinga invasion. Polonnaruwa’s demise started because of various power struggles within the royal families and ended with the Indian invasion. The last king to rule here was a Kalinga king by the name of Kalinga Maga, an oppressive tyrant.

A stone tablet used to chronicle the deeds of the Kings

Sath Mahal Prasadaya – A temple believed to be built in the style of East Asian pagoda’s, with 7 levels. Built by King Parakramabahu.

Sath Mahal Prasadaya

Vatadage – A circular building housing several Buddha statues in the seated position.


Sandakadapahana or Moonstone, intricately carved stone and the base stairs





Dude, where are my arms

Atadage – A temple used to house the sacred tooth relic built by king Vijayabahu I. Named so because it was supposedly built in 8 days.


Nishanka Latha Mandapaya – A hall of sorts where pirith chanting is done, built by King Nissankamalla.

Thuparama – Believed to be built during the late Anuradhapura era, to house Buddha statues. Has walls 7 feet thick.

Set in stone

In the Shadows

Gal Vihara or Uththararama – Built by King Parakramabahu


Carved out of living stone

Gal Vihara

Pothgul Vihara. Statue some believes to be of King Parakaramabahu, while some believe it's one of his advisors.

Family Fun Time

Visited Somawathiya and Sigiriya on the way back.

Data taken from a book called “Ape Urumaya Polonnaruwa” by P. R. S. Bandaranayaka

Friday, November 05, 2010


I’m not a big family person. I know some immediate relatives and outside of that circle, my knowledge is limited. Truthfully I’ve never made an attempt learn about them either. I might get some info during some conversation or other, but the next minute I’ve forgotten them.

Unlike me, my parents and their generation seems to know anyone and everyone, no matter what the distance of the relationship. I am usually left watching clueless as they talk about this one and that one at family gatherings.

Similarly, I’ve never been much interested in family ancestry, but recently I was made aware about the gravesite of my Grandfather’s Grandfather. I think that makes him my great, great grandfather. It kind of made me realize that these people actually existed and led their own unique lives. He was born 1844 and died in 1890, after spending 46 years on this earth. Kind of makes you wonder what their lives were like. How less complicated their lives must have been, when compared to the ones we lead today. Makes you want to go back and see what it was like.

St. Mary's Cathedral, Galle

Come, and take a seat.

My Great, Great Grandfathers grave site

a very peaceful cemetery. I think this used to be the old one, which is not in use now.


Wednesday, November 03, 2010

One Night in Bangkok

Well, two nights actually, all thanks to the company.

Our annual trip organizing committee decided to go for a change this year and made it an international trip. So that’s how our lot ended up in Bangkok for a three day jaunt. What a bunch of lucky bastards we are.

My impression of the city is that it’s basically Colombo with more infrastructures, yet congested and fast paced. The people on the other hand seem more organized and really tolerant, all trying to get on with their lives.

Unfortunately it’s difficult to get the real feel for a country and its people by just visiting for a couple of days. You need to live there for some time to get the true pulse. They know that you are a tourist and treat you as such.

Enjoy the pics…

Wat Traimit, Temple of the Golden Buddha

Wat Traimit, Temple of the Golden Buddha

Wat Traimit, Temple of the Golden Buddha

Wat Traimit, Temple of the Golden Buddha

Wat Traimit, Temple of the Golden Buddha

Wat Traimit, Temple of the Golden Buddha

Street Life

Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

Stained Glass @ Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

Buddha Statue @ Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

Buddha Statue @ Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple


Buddha Statue @ Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

A Corridor of Statues @ Wat Benchamabophit, White Marble Temple

Sky Train track

Roadside shrine. There are plenty of these shrines by the road side dedicated to various deities. People stop by and worship them while going about their daily business.

Roadside shrine

Roadside shrine