We are here in Tissamaharama and heard by chance that Sri Lanka's biggest festival is on right now just 18kn up the road. At this festival, Hindus, Muslims and Buddhists all come together for basically one big party and a visit to their respected temples. Kataramagama is the holiest place in Sri Lanka
So with the promise of fire walkers, elephants, dancing, a parade and human skewers of course we headed up there.
It was very colourful and very noisy and there were 100s of people lying around everywhere. it seems whole families come together and all camp in the open to ensure they get the most out of the evening. The weather is warm enough so that's not a problem, it's just the fine sandy dust on the floors everywhere which would put me off joining them!
The parade was very good with lots of brightly coloured costumes, dancers, elephants, lights and fire. We watched people crossing the river and had a look around the market city which springs up for the festival. We did manage to find Becki her elephant so that was a bonus (Becki is trying to buy an elephant souvenir in every town we go to)
Apart from that there seemed to be very little to do other than go to your temple and pray. Our tuk tuk driver accompanied us the whole evening and his friend joined us to translate into English. To be honest, i thought they were quite entertaining themselves. I think they were a little bemused by us too, especially when i offered them a wet wipe after we had eaten a snack. Not something either of them had come accross before
Well the fire was still raging at midnight, and as it had hours still to burn down enough for anyone to even dare walk on it, we thought we would call it a night. So no fire walkers, no human skewers but plenty of everything else we headed back to Tissa and our air conditioned room.
and a shower!.....