posted on Thursday, February 18, 2016

Puttalam


First full day of cycling and given the pretty constant head wind I am really happy that I managed to do the 90 kilometres that separated my not precisely known location last night to the town of Puttalam. My legs held on decently while my arse had a rough time adjusting to this new routine. Cockerels in Sri Lanka are pretty loud and by four in the morning you get an early wake up call. It is a little early but given the heat at midday, early mornings are the best for cycling. Not too scenic of a road today. I followed busy A3 Road going straight south to north along the western coast. I first experienced the convenience of buying coconut to drink the fresh water, a good and very cheap way to keep hydrated in this heat. Stalls selling them are found everywhere, one hardly needs to carry bottled water. After a few hours of kerosene therapy with heavy traffic the road got a little quieter. I stopped to get some sweet and savoury pastry and some cold Nescafé shake which I can see becoming a staple when I need to raise my sugar level. The savoury fish pastry was interesting to say the least. A few bites and the weird filling produced a syncopated bout of uncontrollable burping. Almost reached my goal I met Brian, my first cycle tourists an English bloke cycling for months here and in India. We cycled together for a little until he announced he would stop there and then to make himself a cup of tea. At first I thought he meant buying one from a nearby stall. Sri Lankan tea is top quality and I can't imagine how cheap a cup is going to be but no! He was brewing his own English stuff sitting in the dust on the side of a busy road, a true gentlemen. It was four o'clock after all...