Rain! - I hadn't reckoned on there being so much of it up here in the hill country.
After performing my morning ablutions, I ventured into town and had breakfast of 2 samosas, egg roll, pineapple juice and coffee at the De Silva Food Centre and then spent some time chatting with 2 Australians who had been sitting at the next table and, as it turned, out were staying in the same guest house. I thought I'd better engage in some tourist activities and so I walked around the well-manicured Victoria Park (300 Rs admission) and had lunch at the adjoining cafe. This was surprisingly good and cheap (about 300Rs for rice and vege curries, a tea and then a coffee).
After this, I took a three-wheeler to the Pedro Tea Estate for a cup of tea and a half-hour guided tour around the factory (200Rs admission; 600Rs for the round trip). Much of the equipment is over 80 years old. Not much was happening however as most of the processing happens at night due to the timing of when the fresh tea leaves arrive and the required resting time of 14 hours.
My plan is to cycle to Ella tomorrow, and for once I've booked a place in advance - Rawana Holiday Resort, as suggested by the 2 aussies - so I won't have to search around town in my soggy gear (my hunch is that tomorrow will also be quite damp; it's been raining here all day on and off). Not sure what I'll do after Ella - one possibility is to just get the train to Colombo; another is to cycle to Ratnapura and thence to the coast and back to Negombo.
at the Pedro Tea Estate - in my green cycling smock!
Park View Inn as seen from Victoria Park
A forlorn attempt to dry cycling gear in my room at Park View Inn - I think it became even more damp...