Saturday, September 05, 2015

Puttalam 5.9.2015

Day 2 cycling: CHILAW to PUTTALAM:

Ride details (from Garmin):

Distance: 54.6km; ODOMETER (Total distance):  102.8km; Moving Time: 3:04; Elapsed Time: 3:27; Avg Speed: 15.8km/hr; Avg Moving Speed: 17.8km/hr; Max Speed:; Total Ascent: 33m; Total Descent: 28m; Max Elevation: 4m; Calories: 1,552 C; Avg Temperature: 35.6 °C; Max Temperature:  43.0 °C

TOTAL WT. (me + bike+ luggage) = 120kg.
Liquids consumed: 1.8L...

After a reasonable night's sleep I had a bracingly cold shower which woke me right up. Even though it's quite warm here, cold showers take a little time to get used to. I'm told they're good for sore muscles. I then had a Sri Lankan breakfast - string hoppers, with several curries (including fish curry), dhal, spiced-up coconut, chilli paste,  and a pot of coffee. Probably the best meal I've yet had, although I did feel a little cautious kickstarting the day with all that, having a few hours of cycling ahead of me.

The ride to Puttalam,  along the A3,  was straightforward - quite sedate compared to what I've encountered in India. In fact, it doesn't feel as risky as cycling down Beach Road in Melbourne. Nevertheless, constant vigilance is required. 

Unfortunately my Garmin,  which was so helpful yesterday, had no nearby accommodation suggestions, so I stopped first at Puttalam Rest House but they wanted what seemed an exorbitant amount for a huge room containing 3 beds & barred windows with no glass in them. The attached bathroom was not very pleasing either.  So I cycled on & stopped at the Senatilake/ Senathilaka Guest Inn. Pricey at 4000 but the manager was happy to settle for 3000 (with the usual 10% tax to be added later). The room is tiny - no space for my bike - but closer inspection reveals it's a pretty good set-up, with fan, AC, a fridge,  wifi, hot & cold water, and a TV! There's even an iron but I don't think I'll be using that. I managed to get hold of a bucket to rinse my cycling gear in (I forgot to bring my own sink plug as I've done on previous cycling trips).

Even though today's ride was relatively short,  I'm feeling quite weary - still finding my cycling legs & adjusting to the warm weather (low 30's). I did bugger-all yesterday other than a stroll along the promenade & I doubt I'll be doing much more today. My plan is to cycle to Anuradhapura tomorrow, spend several days there with perhaps a side trip to Mihintale, and then cycle down to Kandy. Not sure what I'll do after that - depends on time & what crops up.
[Please note that the appearance of any aberrant words in what I've written is likely to be due to the predictive text my phone seems to sometimes insert at random]

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