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Saturday, July 01, 2006

Goodbye Ceylon

So yesterday was my last day of the three month ADP project in Sri Lanka. Man, times flies. I spent most of Friday packing up and running around for last meals and errands. Mrs. David, my piano teacher, was kind enough to stop by and give me a little parting gift before I left. She's so sweet. Raj, Renuka and I had massages at the Sanctuary Spa, and then spent the afternoon doing what we did quite a bit of in our free time - playing Scrabble while sipping on a coffee at Barista. For dinner we went back to the Gallery Cafe and had a tasty meal and a capping off chat. And of course we capped off the night by having one last shot of Arrack at the Cricket Club Cafe. After that I picked up my stuff from the Taj and was off in a cab to the airport. Just like that, the three months I spent in an unknown, mysterious tropical island were over.

I had a wonderful experience filled with numerous activities, sightseeing, and people. I'm lucky to have developed a strong friendship with Renuka (who unfortunately will soon be a Dookie) and Rajitha (who unfortunately is British. God Bless America).

Working at ICTA was a great learning experience, and has only whetted my appetite more for getting into development work. Hopefully Lanka Gate gets off the ground and one day I can point to the portal as something for which I laid the groundwork. I'm proud of the work we did and thank everyone at Accenture who helped out back home, and I think that my experience from ICTA should be useful anywhere else I go.

When asked whether I'd come back to Sri Lanka, I decided my answer was yes, I would. Not so much because I want to revisit the country - there are too many other places in the world higher on my list - but because I now know a corner of the world as well as anyone, and it would be cool to bring other visitors to Colombo and Sri Lanka and be able to guide them around. I know the best spots to go in Colombo, I know a lot about the sights through the island, and I even know a couple locals to hang out with. So, if anyone reading this is going to Sri Lanka let me know, I can give you some great tips...

Sri Lanka is an enchanting place, and hope the country can recover from the tsunami and reach a solution to the ethnic conflict. I know I'll be constantly and intently reading up on news from Sri Lanka. Ayubowan...


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