A World without walls
everyday life while homeschooling overseas
Last week was the Sri Lankan New Year, so Devin and I decided to take a little trip to Nuwara Eliya. We had heard so much about this little city: it's beautiful; it's green; it's cold; there are biking/hiking trails all over; it's small and quiet... Sounded like a utopia to us! So, super early in the morning...before the kids were awake...we loaded up our bikes and some stuff, and off we went! Having left so early, we missed all the traffic and made it there in just 5 hours--enjoying every minute of those crazy, twisty, turny roads up and down the mountains!
Then we arrived in town! We made it to our cute little Bed and Breakfast--it was so fun! It was the top floor of someone's house. This young kid decided to go to 'Hotel School', then turn his top floor of his house into a little B&B! It had two rooms--a double and a triple. Then there was a common area with a dining table, couches and tv, and a big kitchen. There were nice balconies to look over as well with lovely views. The best part about it, it was within 5 minutes' walking to downtown, and yet we didn't hear any of the downtown noise! Since we came during Sri Lankan New Year, there was a LOT of noise! LOTS of cars, people, loud music, preparations for carnivals, all sorts of stuff! So we hopped on our bikes and found a cool lake. This is my dad's lake, since it is called Gregory's Lake! Plus, we also found where Pedro went after they voted him in as president of Preston High School! Ha! Vote for Pedro!
After our biking excursion, we ate food, then wandered around and visited this really lovely park in the middle of the town. I took WAY too many pictures of the flowers, but it was really lovely! AND it was SO nice and cool! We wandered around this tiny park for probably an hour, then we just laid down on the grass in the shade and read our scriptures on our phones and dozed a bit and just relaxed like crazy! Can't beat that!!
After the park, we enjoyed a leisurely dinner and walk, then we played a fun game together (Alhambra--it's a good one!) and went to bed early! We had gotten up at 4:30 in order to get to Nuwara Eliya and beat the traffic, and the next day, we were doing the same thing!!
So, next morning, by 4:30 we were up and ready to go! This morning, we were headed to Horton Plains--a National Park here in Sri Lanka that boasts a view just as incredible as the Grand Canyon--except that this one has lots of trees. The hike/view point is called 'World's End', and so we were off to see the end of the world as we know it! Ha! (I did sing that song a LOT while driving there and hiking there...poor Devin...) We took a tiny wrong turn on the way down (it was REALLY dark and we didn't have a GPS), so we went the scenic route. Whew. Dang. We DROVE the end of the world! Holy heart attack. The road was hairpin (and I do mean hairpin--as in ZIGZAG--as in we had to do 5-6 point turns just to get to the road again!!!) turns all the way up a HUGE mountain and it was one lane that was NOT maintained. BEAUTIFUL views, though!! I had to get out and do jumping jacks at the end of that one, though, to release the adrenaline rushing through my body! Ha!
We finally found the right road, but then we pretty much had to do another hairpin, hair-raising, twisty turny up a mountain side adventure to get to the park itself. This time, with other people who were crazy enough to want to see the end of the world. We made it, though. The hike was really lovely. It's a round trip, so we went the opposite way of everyone else, which was brilliant, because we got to hike in the quiet! We saw waterfalls, plains, jungles, weird horned lizards, monkeys, birds...so beautiful! Then the end of the world: It's pretty cool! I don't think it's QUITE as extensive as the Grand Canyon, but it IS a drop and it's very pretty. I'd do it again.
After we hiked World's End, as we were driving out, we saw another trail head. It said it was a 2km hike to the top of the third highest peak in Sri Lanka! Well, we just had to go! So, up we went! The hike was lovely--very quiet and woodsy. The views on the way up and down were SO beautiful! We even stopped for a little 'picnic' to enjoy the view! The summit, however, was a disappointment. It was a big old radio tower all fenced off with some broken solar panels! It was completely surrounded by 5+ ft tall shrubs, so there was no view at all whatsoever. SAD! Oh well. Again, it was worth the hike. Sometimes you do things just to say you did them.
We really enjoyed our day hiking about Horton Plains. When we got back to Nuwara Eliya, we basically just hung out! Weird, eh? We tried to watch television (hard to believe, I know), but there was NOTHING on, so we sort of took a nap on the couch...then we put gas in the car and got cotton candy for the kids and got ready so we could leave the next day.
Bright and early the next morning, we decided we had to use our bikes one last time. So, 6 am, we went off on a sunrise bike ride! It was SO lovely! The air was cool, hardly anyone was out because a) it's 6am, and b) it was the Sri Lankan New Year day--an official and HUGE national holiday! We rode our bikes up a mountain and it was glorious! The views were beautiful, the company was fun, we waved to people who were out, and just felt happy and calm riding 20+ km on a bike up and down a mountain in Sri Lanka. Everyone needs days like this. Best. Day. Ever. Sometimes, you just gotta do something different and outside...where it's not hot. :)
And, the rest is history. We packed up the car and headed home. We took a few wrong turns and got stuck in some pretty serious traffic in some of the little villages, but once we hit Colombo, it was smooth sailing...only because almost everyone was NOT in Colombo! Hooray for traveling on National Holidays! :) And hooray for getaways for moms and dads!
Who Am I?
As a Stay At Home Mom of 4 wonderful children, I have the amazing opportunity not only to home school them, but to do so in many different places! I am married to the most amazingly wonderful (and handsome) man in the whole world! Together, we seek out, every day, that Joy in the Journey that makes life exciting!
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