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Christopher Wheeler | profile | all galleries >> Rahil Aggarwal-Wheeler >> 2011 >> February 2011 >> Rahil in Sri Lanka tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Rahil in Sri Lanka

Rahil visited Sri Lanka for the first time in early February of 2011. He arrived in Colombo on Independence Day and enjoyed watching the festivities, particularly because there were dozens of lighted toy vendors along the beach in front of the Taj Samudra hotel.

The next day he, Mom, and Dad drove two hours south to the Heritance Hotel, designed by the renowned Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa, in Ahungalla. Rahil promptly fell into the infinity pool and was as promptly plucked out by his father. Surrounded by tame squirrels, long-tailed monkeys, crabs, large, lumbering iguanas, as well as friends from Delhi, Rahil was in for treat.

By far the highlight of the trip was holding baby sea turtles -- Rahil had been anticipating doing so for weeks. He enjoyed it so much he successfully organized a second visit to the hatchery. Other highlights included an upriver boat-ride during which Rahil held an alligator at a fish farm and learned how to make fresh cinnamon sticks; a day trip to Galle; incredible sunsets; a ride in a glass-bottomed boat; and a lot of surf splashing, including an encounter with a particularly large wave that removed Rahil's swim goggles and didn't return them.

The beaches were pristine. People were polite and stood in line. They didn't spit or litter or honk their horns. Prices were reasonable. Considering what had happened in the northern third of the island recently, it was a more than a little disconcerting, but from a purely tourism perspective, it was wonderful.

To see Rahil realize his dream of holding a sea turtle (and then dropping it, which I hope was not part of the dream), click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Bh30bXyBUI

To see him with a nine-month old alligator on a leash: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUFcRE-9S80

To see his ride in a glass-bottomed boat: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBlPapjgnZ4

To see some less than purported sleight of hand: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dVuNMlXd7Bw
Flight to Colombo with best friend Brownie.
Flight to Colombo with best friend Brownie.
Behind the Lighthouse Hotel outside of Galle
Behind the Lighthouse Hotel outside of Galle
Dessert!
Dessert!
Tuk-tuk ride.
Tuk-tuk ride.
aka River Safari.
aka River Safari.
Beach combing.
Beach combing.
with Zoya.
with Zoya.
Big hotel fish.
Big hotel fish.
First stop:  sea turtle hatchery.  This turtle's about three years old.
First stop: sea turtle hatchery. This turtle's about three years old.
Highlight of the trip:  holding a baby sea turtle!
Highlight of the trip: holding a baby sea turtle!
Guess who stumbled into the hotel swimming pool?
Guess who stumbled into the hotel swimming pool?
Rahil, that's who!
Rahil, that's who!
First contact with Sri Lankan surf.
First contact with Sri Lankan surf.
Sunset.
Sunset.
Pool was nice, too.
Pool was nice, too.
with Dad.
with Dad.
Maybe I should have lobbied for a kite...
Maybe I should have lobbied for a kite...
The kite lobby worked!
The kite lobby worked!
Morning surf.
Morning surf.
Tiger fish.
Tiger fish.
Tidal pool behind Lighthouse Hotel outside of Galle.
Tidal pool behind Lighthouse Hotel outside of Galle.
Rahil, Alia, and Zoya with cow
Rahil, Alia, and Zoya with cow
Threat.
Threat.
Solidarity.
Solidarity.
Red tuk-tuk.
Red tuk-tuk.
Conquest.
Conquest.
Galle Fort tourists.
Galle Fort tourists.
View of Galle Harbor from the fort.
View of Galle Harbor from the fort.
Awaiting lunch.
Awaiting lunch.
No candy?!
No candy?!
Anticipation.
Anticipation.
Wary.
Wary.
Retreat.
Retreat.
Tag.
Tag.
I'm four!
I'm four!
Farewell!
Farewell!
Indecision.
Indecision.
See?
See?
Tuk-tuk ride.
Tuk-tuk ride.
Nine-month old baby alligator.
Nine-month old baby alligator.
Sloshing.
Sloshing.
Can we keep him?
Can we keep him?
Lunch.
Lunch.
Cow ahead!
Cow ahead!
First time in a hot tub.
First time in a hot tub.
View of Galle from the fort.
View of Galle from the fort.
Glass bottomed boat.
Glass bottomed boat.
Second visit to the turtle hatchery!
Second visit to the turtle hatchery!
Endangered Hawksbill turtle.
Endangered Hawksbill turtle.
Galle Fort is boring!
Galle Fort is boring!