Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Groan Rattle and Shake (aka the road to hell).

Thud! Thump!!!! Groan thud rattle thud thump! Bigger Groan!

This is how I would describe the last 300 kilometers of my journey up and down from Jaffna to Omanthai.

If you (like me) are thinking that a quick drive to Jaffna and back in two days might be a nice idea. Think again. It was one of the worst decisions I have ever made.

The last time I went to Jaffna was in February and roads were far better than what I experienced ten months after. And I thought it would have improved by leaps and bounds. Guess I too swallowed the PR blitz about Uthuru Wasanthaya hook line and sinker. We left Colombo at 12 in the afternoon which in hindsight was not a good thing to do, as we were stuck in traffic and had progressed only 16 kilo meters in the first hour. It was 7 by the time we hit Vavuniya to refuel. From this point on the journey could be described as nightmarish. Not only because of the pot holes but also thanks to the pelting rain. Driving through elephant pass was scary in pitch black as thick sheets of rain kept visibility low; the fact that the rains loosened land mines and made them float did not help to reassure us too.

We finally arrived at our destination at 11.30 in the night and left for Colombo at 3 the next day to arrive 10 hours later as we were driving against the traffic. It seems the best way to get to Jaffna these days is in one of those Luxury Buses which charge you only 900 bucks one way. And you sleep or watch some tamil movies without having to worry about the condition of the road. And once you get there you can always hire some kind of van or tuk-tuk. Well at least next time I will know better.


santhoshi said...

oh dear! Must warn the friend who is planning to do a two day trip on work.

Scrumps said...

Awww! CJ! Well I remember the first time we drove to Jaffna (about 5 years ago!). I was so pleased the back seat had a seat belt! But I enjoyed it immensely.

Happy New Year!

Angel said...

Gaaahh! Omanthai onwards is bad even from the so called luxury buses, especially if you are unlucky enough to sit in the back! My neck still hurts!!

Hope you have recovered from the journey CJ, and here's to a 2011 filled with great experinces!

Have a happy new year!