I awoke in Polonnaruwa, with a migraine and sore sinuses. I had an awful night sleep on a bed that could at best be as comfortable as a Chinese bed. The mattress was thin and the base as hard as a rock meant my back was also aching. Fortunately instead of catching a bus, I got a car to drive me there. About $40, but made the trip easier for me. That was until we stopped at a herb and spice garden. I was tempted to buy their remedy for migraines just to see if it worked, but the usual tourist extortion price racket was going on so I refused. I realise people here need to make a living, but rather than trying to sucker in the one or two big spenders who don’t care, they could price things more reasonably and more people might buy. The packaging was shoddy so I told them I can’t get that through Australian Customs either.
I arrived in Sigiriya and went straight to bed. There was a heavy rainstorm all afternoon and my supply of panadol was dwindling. I asked the guesthouse and they gave me two more panadol and a bottle of water. Eventually at 7pm I got up and went outside. I found a little place serving Roti and ordered a bland egg roti. It was all i needed and only cost me about $4. I also found the shop next door sold panadol and bought two cards or 24 for the princely sum of 80 cents. I went back to bed and had a night of getting up going to the loo and drinking more water and taking more panadol.
I awoke this morning feeling a little better. I went to have breakfast and my appetite was still lacking. I manage to eat an egg hopper, drink some tea and ate this rolled up pancake with a fruity spice mix in the middle (think fruit mince pie but different flavour). I turned down the hopper’s with chilli, tomato and onion mix. Too early in the morning for that plus I struggled to eat a fraction of what was on the table, including the fruit, some roti and some other things.
I went back to my room, and had a shower and took more panadol. I felt refreshed enough I thought to just go for a walk over to Sigiriya and at least see it. It was visible from the side about 100 metres from my room. There was a nice breeze blowing so while it was high 20’s at 9am in the morning it wasn’t too bad. I got my ticket and declined half a dozen offers of a guide, especially as the ticket was close to $40 (typical of world heritage listed sites) and because I might only last an hour.
The place was packed and if I’d been feeling better I’d have been here at 7am when it opened. I started walking towards the rock and the steps started. Because there were so many people I was forced to take it easy. Months of gym work seems to have helped as I was never gasping for breath. I decided I would go as far as the Lion claws which was halfway up. There was only one problem and I should have paid attention to the lady coming back down the wrong way due to her fear of heights.
Coming up were the spiral staircases to the porn cave aka as frescoes depicting topless women with big tits. The fact you had to ascend one spiral staircase and descend the other clinging to the side of a cliff face just to see some porn on a cave wall. there was a locked gate preventing one from bypassing the titillation above, instead forcing one to shit their pants prior to looking at the “frescoes”.
After the spiral stair cases it was a relatively easy walk along the rock and up some stairs to where the lions claws are carved into the rock. The only problem was, people don’t read signs and a swarm of wasps decided to come out and play. Even when the guards said to be quiet and went shush, people keep being loud and annoying. So I didn’t get to see the lions claws carved into the rock. The sign was pretty amusing for the wasp attack though.
I wasn’t feeling too bad but thought I should rest for the arvo. I’m heading to Kandy tomorrow and then on saturday take the scenic train ride through the tea plantations to Ella.