Monday, December 31, 2012

To all the readers of this blog,
We wish you a
Happy and Prosperous
New Year 2013.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Saturday, December 29, 2012

A9 Highway, Omanthai to Puliyangkulam, Sri Lanka.

Paddy field near Omanthai.
A Hindu temple being restored.

Zonal Education Office, Puliyangkulam.

Work progressing on the railway line.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Vavuniya, A9 Highway, Sri Lanka.

The Vavuniya Government Hospital

Petrol shed

On the road to Puliyangkulam 
Vavuniya caters to all of a farmers needs. There are sales points for all the farm implements. There is no necessity to go to Colombo to buy even a tractor or car.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

On the A9 highway, from Medawachchiya to Vavuniya, Sri Lanka.

A beautiful drive. Do not go too fast even though you may be tempted. There are stray cattle on the road and the Policed are strict about speeding. Enjoy the scenery.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Highway from Kurunegala to Wariyapola, Sri Lanka.

A well laid out highway from Kurunegala to Wariyapola leading to Anuradhapura or Puttalam. Two scenes from this highway are shown in the photos.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Gloriosa superba, Diyabubula, Rathnapura, Sri Lanka.

'Niyangala' - Sinhalese, 'Kandal' - Tamil, a plant bearing poisinous fruits. The flower looks glorious and is superb to look at.

Monday, December 10, 2012

'Plaa' to drink toddy and wooden 'clogs' with nails. Photos sent by Dr.Susiri Weerasekara.

The traditional way of drinking 'toddy' - the fermented sap from the Palmyra tree - in Jaffna, was in a container made from dried  Palmyra leaves. This was called a 'Plaa'. This was usually done under palmyra trees where freshly harvested toddy could be enjoyed. This picture shows a customer enjoying his drink of the day.

In the 1940s to 1960s 'clogs' - wooden shoes - most probably introduced by the Dutch were in common use throughout Ceylon. I recall using these to go to the toilets in the school hostels in the 1940s. The ones I used had a leather strap in front in place of the wooden peg seen in the picture. Self immolation - to burn away past sins - was part of Saiva beleif in the Indian sub-continent. Thus piercing of the skin of the back of the chest with hooks and carrying a 'Kaavady'' - 'kaavu thady' - was and is a part of the religious tradition in Jaffna .  In another act of self-immolation, nails were inserted as seen in the picture on the wooden clogs, and the penitent would walk on these clogs from one temple to another a few Kilometers away. This was part of 'fulfilling a vow' made to Lord Murugan or Goddess Paththini. The vow was taken to ward off a predicted future disaster in ones life, or having minimized the effects of a past 'bad-time' or 'apala'.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

'Perahera', Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

Fire-ball dancers

Female devotees carrying lighted candles

'Twisting canes' dance

A baby elephant in the 'Perahera'
A 'Perahera' wending its way at night along Kudagama road, Avissawella.