Monday, October 29, 2012

The art of doing nothing!

I did not realize this was an art till quite recently. 
We had gone out to the jungles with a group of friends for a couple of days. There was also a lady from overseas among us. Each time there was a pause in the conversation and everyone was enjoying a quiet moment she would suggest that we all do something like a game or talk about a certain topic or some other kind of activity which involved words . Anything other than just enjoy the stillness and sounds of the glorious nature which surrounded us. It seemed that this person was afraid of quietness and of simply doing nothing.  Something us Sri Lankans are quite familiar with I guess. Later we realized that it was a very European trait where every aspect of their lives are planned to a fault. She was telling us that some of her friends know where and when they would be going on vacation three years in advance.  Now that’s what I call planning. But do I want to live like that. No way in hell.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Heavenly Showers…

At the risk of being ridiculed and being cast as a bit of a sissy I must confess that I have an infatuation with bath gels and soaps. Let me loose in a body shop outlet and I can keep myself occupied happily for a couple of hours.
 I never thought our local products came up to much till I happened to walk into the Spa Ceylon outlet at Crescat to buy a wedding gift to a certain fellow blogger. Suddenly I started taking note of their bath products and got two which I thought was extremely interesting. One was a combination of aloe vera and mint whilst the other was margosa and lime. I tried the Alo vera and mint shower gel and the only way to describe it is by screaming out “OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!” in a very gay Carrie Bradshaw manner. It was absolutely divine.  In fact it felt so good that it was sinful. My entire skin was tingling after using it. I felt so refreshed and alive that I had to try the sample bottle of neroli jasmine hair cleanser which I had been hesitating to use all this time. Well it was equally as divine.
I am so thrilled and overjoyed about my discovery.
All this time I had to spend through my nose to get down or purchase good quality bath products from abroad but now it seems that equally good (or even better) quality products are within arms reach of desire at a far more affordable price. Who could ask for more? 

(d)Rag! The good the bad and the ugly!

It is so easy to imitate instead of innovate.
 Especially in an environment where most of the more hyped up, applauded and financially successful English Theatre performances have been reproductions. Good imitation where one tries to be as close to the original theatrical performance as possible. I believe it takes a certain amount of bravado and panache to put together a completely original full length Broadway style musical production in such an environment. Kudos to everyone at Center Stage Productions. I applaud you for putting in the time and the effort to put together a large production in the caliber of “Rag” the musical.
It started off with a bang. I thought the set which was made with moving scaffolding was highly innovative and loved the tattered rag which they used as a projection screen. The actors and actresses were nice young and vivacious.
I just wish it wasn’t so excruciatingly slow.
I believe the director - who was the main actor as well - had a very relevant message. But oh my goodness didn’t he take a long time telling it.  He sang, he danced, he got on his knees and pleaded, he crawled and gyrated on the floor whilst singing like a fat worm, he flayed himself, he cried, tied himself with string and shaved his head to tell us what it was. But three hours and fifteen minutes later you had been inundated with so much emotion you had forgotten where it all started and what the entire plot was about.
The sound engineering did not help. It was the same kind of sound which was used for Evita.  What they did not realize is that most of the audience was familiar with the words of Evita and even if the words of the songs could not be heard clearly the audience could fill in the blanks by memory. Sadly it is not so when you are saying something completely new where each word has to be understood clearly if we are to ascertain the deeper meaning of what is being sung about. I know this for a fact because in advertising we say “if you have nothing to say then just sing”.  I was on the 06th row and could not understand what was being sung. I pity the people in the balcony.
I still can’t understand why some in the audience gave the play a standing ovation. Even some of those who were fast asleep towards the end. I am sure that since this was towards the end of the play the front rows would have been full of well wishers and relatives. Or the audience was so impatient to stand after being stuck in their seats for over three hours they thought a standing ovation was the best way to disguise a yearning to get their butt off the chairs.
One never knows would they?
Oh by the way there is nothing ugly about it I just put it there on the heading cos it looked good. 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Pros and cons of the kokmote Bungalow Wilpattu.

They say never to judge a book by the cover. It is the same when it comes to bungalows of the wild life department. What you see is not what you get.  This post has been in the making for nearly two decades. That is about how long I have been visiting the Kokmotai bungalow for. I don’t visit Wilpattu park very often but when I do so which is at least twice or thrice a year I have stayed in this particular bungalow more than in any other.
But every time I stayed at this bungalow I found it more frustrating than the previous time.  Now, finally the pent up frustration has erupted in the form of words on this post.
When you drive up to the bungalow you can’t help going wow when you come face to face with this bungalows imposing wooden structure. I have never seen such a majestic sight. In fact it looks as if it belongs on the set of Heidi in the swiss Alps instead of the warm humid tropical forest.

And therein lies the problem. 
This bungalow should be in the Alps because it has been inspired by a European design which retains heat by trapping it. And once you have spent a couple of hours sweating it out then you begin to appreciate the half walled standard wild life bungalows which let the air circulate even though it does not look as fashionable. If you want to escape the heat the only alternative you have is to place the beds on the balcony. But sadly the balcony is tiny which means you cannot place a bed lengthwise unless it is only the mattress. With the greatest of difficulty you  can end up squeezing a4 beds side by side on the balcony. However this means the beds are uncomfortably close to one another.
I also found the toilets absolutely pathetic. Since the entire structure was made out of wood the floor and walls of the toilets had been laid with some kind of rubberized water proof sheeting. Which is not bad but then some nut has thought of livening the place up by smattering paint all over the green sheeting. It would have still worked if not for the fact that whoever did so had used brownish yellow ochre as one of the colors. Giving a person the impression that some person with a bad case of Diarrhea has defiled the entire place. Not good! Not good at all. And to add insult to injury only one of the two toilets has a shower which is not adequate if you have a crowd of ten which is the capacity of the bungalow. What was worse was the wooden structure is a breeding ground for rats and it is full of them which is not very hygienic is it?
One other negative about the bungalow is that is it located in furthest corner of the park. Which means it takes you two hours to get to the areas which are good for sightings.
The Modera gam aru in full spate
However there is one redeeming feature about the bungalow which is the modara gam aru which runs a few feet away from the bungalow. Most of the time it is dry but if you are lucky to visit the bungalow when it is in full spate it is an absolute pleasure to wallow in. One of my most memorable moment has been lying down in the water with a cold can of toddy (sadly you cannot buy them anymore) in my hands and luxuriating in the strong currents of water which were massaging me as they gushed over me. It was absolute heaven and far better than a Jacuzzi.
In the good old days there were not many bungalows available inside Wilpattu to stay in but thankfully today there are many more to choose from. Personally I look forward to spending some time in the “Manavila” bungalow with its breath taking view of a villu where you are sure to sight a leopard whilst seated inside.
But worse comes to worse if I had no alternative other than to stay in Kokmote I would rather than miss out on the grandeur of the Wilpattu national park.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The unexpected expected!

I agree it is a confusing heading but trust me this has not been written merely to garner your attention. In fact there is a lot of meaning behind this seemingly mysterious header.
 I must confess I write this post with much trepidation because I know I will be castigated by many since what I am writing about is against the tide of public opinion. Of course I am talking about the recently concluded production of Evita by the workshop players.
It was good as expected. But I expected more. There I said it. (Looks around surreptitiously to see if stones are being cast at me)
Guess that’s what happens when you continuously keep raising the bar as the workshop players seem to have done at least with every one of their productions I have attended. No I have not attended all of them. But the few I have been to have bowled me over and left me gasping for breath.
Guess this time too when I walked into the Lionel Wendt Theatre I was expecting to be bowled over. Sadly that did not happen. That does not mean it was a bad production by any means. Jerome is a wonderful director and Evita played by Dilrukshi Fonseka mesmerized us with her powerful voice. But amidst the applause when the curtain came down deep down inside me I felt something was lacking. Don’t ask me what it is because I can’t put my finger on it. But still I was expecting the unexpected but what I got was the expected. Guess in a way that was unexpected. :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Gratitude is the BEST attitude!

Are you ready to raise your positive 
vibration so you can attract positive
people and opportunities?

I hope so, because this exercise will leave you
feeling positively buzzed.

One way to boost your positive energy
is by expressing gratitude. And there are
no rules as to what or who you're expressing
gratitude towards.

Here are some examples of what I'm grateful for:

- I'm grateful for my loving husband Glen
- I'm grateful for the walks I take with my puppy
Bella everyday
- I'm grateful to live in a city with beautiful weather
- I'm grateful for my wonderful social circle
- I'm grateful for all the beauty that surrounds me

Now, I want you to actively think of, write down and
say aloud, 5 things that you're grateful for.

Then, make this a daily habit…

And you'll discover the more you express
gratitude for even the smallest of things, the better
you'll feel, thus raising your overall positive energy,
and attracting more abundance into your life.

Because by doing this exercise, you'll be focusing
on what you DO have and not on what you DON'T

Just remember, gratitude is the BEST attitude!

This is not my article but something which I got from mind movies but I want to place it on here because I really believe this makes absolute sense and also I can access it at my convenience.