Friday, September 04, 2015


Day 1 cycling: NEGOMBO to CHILAW.

Ride details (from Garmin): 
Distance: 48.2km; Moving Time: 3:02; Elapsed Time: 3:25; Avg Speed: 14.1km/hr; Avg Moving Speed: 15.9km/hr; Max Speed:; Total Ascent: 38m; Total Descent: 30m; Max Elevation: 14m; Calories: 1,308 C; Avg Temperature: 32.2 °C; Max Temperature:  37.0 °C

I had a terrible night's sleep - for some reason - perhaps due to mosquitoes or heat rash - I felt incredibly itchy all over, and seemed to spend most of the night scratching myself. Another possibility is that it could have been an allergic reaction to quite possibly the worst chicken curry,  lime soda & lassi - yes, all of them - that I've ever had. And this was at the #5 rated - in TripAdvisor - restaurant in Negombo. On top of the bad food,  I was persecuted by the young waiter who wanted to talk & ask questions the whole way through. I contemplated telling him to fuck off when he seemed unable to pick up on my nonverbal hints, but my sense of civility got the better of me. (I tried adding a review to TripAdvisor but they rejected it for some reason...).

I felt cheered however when I got up & discovered that my bike tyre hadn't deflated overnight. The Angel Inn turned out to be relatively expensive - about 4000 rupees a night,  totalling around USD $94 or AUD $134.

It was nice to hit the road & blow away the cobwebs; the traffic on the A3 was intense in parts but so far not as troubling as the traffic in India. I rode some of the way along the beach road but unfortunately as I later discovered,  I rejoined the main road far too soon.

As I pulled into town (Chilaw), I pressed the 'Lodgings' button on my Garmin (this is the first time I've used the Garmin on an overseas bike ride & it's quite useful - actually better than the smartphone which ran out of gas halfway here) showed a place called the Rest House was 260m away so I headed there & took a room for 2200rp (haggled down, I'm pleased to say from 2500). It's pretty ordinary & in fact quite expensive for what's provided - no TV, Wifi or hot water - but the holes in the sheets seem reasonably clean. The guy showing me the room was incredulous in his denial when I asked if mosquitoes were an issue. I don't believe him.

I thought the bottle of water on the table was a nice gesture until I noticed it was half empty - left behind by a previous occupant. Previous occupants have left behind a lot of other material I noticed when I put my glasses on to inspect my feet - one of the things you do when cycling - and took a magnified glance at the floor.

After a cold shower I went to the attached restaurant & had vegetable fried rice,  2 ginger beers & a pot of coffee. Pretty basic but better than Tusker or Spargo Beach Restaurant. This place is in quite a good location - more or less on the beach front & there's a nice promenade to stroll on.

I feel fairly fatigued even though today's ride wasn't especially long. I'm also sunburnt - I neglected to apply any sunscreen to my arms...  hopefully not another night of scratching.  Oh well. ..better head indoors as there seem to be quite a lot of mosquitoes...

Rest House, Chilaw

bathroom at Rest House, Chilaw

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