|Our bus to Matara|
As we waited for the bus down to the south we had been warned that it could be busy! We were specifically told to wait for the direct bus to Galle which would be stopping in Mirissa, and the old man at the bus stop who had assigned himself the job of getting tourists onto the right buses confirmed this to be true. However, when the rammed bus to Matara came along (the town before Mirissa), about ten minutes before our bus was due, everyone was adamant we should get on and change when we got there. Confused, we did as we were told and threw our bags in the boot. There was just enough room for us to stand in the doorway at the front and before long I found myself sitting on the big gear box where our bags would normally go, right next to the driver, with Megs soon joining me. She later got a seat, but there I stayed, developing a seriously high heart rate, as I watched the erratic driver for about 4 hours. En-route we also stopped for a coffee break for about ten minutes where I was lucky enough to experience the most disgusting squat toilets I believe Sri Lanka has to offer- with doors made of planks off hinges or simply no door at all, filled to the brim with what I hope was mostly water and not wee! Needless to say there was no hanging around in them for very long!
|The Bay of Mirissa|
We opted for a tuktuk for the last 6km leg of the journey from Matara to Mirissa. This was literally the scariest ride of my life. I had my hand over my mouth the entire way as our driver cut up buses and dared the oncoming traffic. He found my reaction hilarious, which I really did not appreciate! As we came into the town we asked him if he could recommend anywhere to stay and no sooner had I finished the sentence he pulled over and asked a guy that was standing outside a guesthouse. And that was where we were to end up staying. We weren’t too impressed by our driver’s eagerness to dump us in the first place he saw (and for a commission from the owner I am sure) however we had to admit that it was the nicest and cheapest place we had stayed in. A hot shower and dry clean bed… what more could we want. We dumped our stuff and hit the beach! Only a 20 metre walk just behind where we were staying. The bay was small and curved around, with palm trees bordering the sand. With it being off season there wasn’t too much sand to be seen and at high tide the waves would come right in. About a metre high, breaking far out in the sea and retaining their power as they came ashore, they created a current that made it difficult to get anywhere. As they receded they created new waves heading out to sea which would crash against those coming in. We hadn’t really understood what Mark had meant in our first night in Colombo when he had described the waves in the south as ‘messy’, but I now had a fair idea! It was nice to finally be at the beach, relaxing, and not having to worry about moving on for a few nights. We spent the evening with our happy hour cocktails in hand, more than happy just to watch the waves lapping at the shore.
We knew the next day that we had to make the most of those crazy waves and brave the daunting current. Bodyboards in hand we headed out in the attempt of perfecting the ‘bodyboarding bikini babe’ look. Despite a lack of photographic evidence due to all our efforts being put into catching the waves, we did manage to ride a few onto the sand and had a whole heap of fun whilst doing so! My time being thrown off the water trampolines in Croatia had taught me that a ponytail was the safest hair style to avoid any nasty knots as a result of too much fun in salty water, however Megs hadn’t got that memo. After half an hour of exhausting memory making, we headed back to dry land and she decided she needed to go back to condition her hair. I thought her urgency was rather strange but having agreed to meet back up in 45 minutes I returned to my book which had become incredibly interesting (Still Alice- a must read!). As the time came and went I left in search of Megan who I found in front of the bedroom mirror looking rather concerned. What some hippies may describe as the perfect dreadlock was held in her hand and it soon became apparent that we were not facing the normal tease-able tangle. In fact it was such a daunting task that we decided to simply bury it amongst other hair and take it to dinner with us, to be dealt with later.
|Sunset from the peninsula|
We set off in search of a sunset, heading to the harbour and experiencing the most unbearable stench of rotting fish, before making our way up to some villas on the top of a peninsula. They were deserted except for some security and a bar man who was working at a bar that didn’t have any alcohol as it was out of season! So there we waited, with a perfect view of the harbour with its little fishing boats heading out to sea, a little cove sheltering a small secret beach and the ocean stretching out in front of us as far as we could see. We stood at the foot of the lighthouse, alone in our own secret viewpoint, and waited for the sun to set. Despite the clouds arriving to ensure it wasn’t to be perfect we were treated to a beautiful orange and red sky for what was a memorable twenty minutes.
We headed back down to the beach, stopping at a restaurant on the beach which had great reviews for its cocktails. It wasn’t long before we found our cocktails accompanied by vegetable tempura and then full on meals as we were tempted by everyone eating around us. Megs went for a giant catch of the day prawn while I went for the smaller tiger prawns with chilli and pasta, which were to play on my stomach for the next 24 hours.
As I was about to tuck myself under my mossie net that night, Megan gently reminded me of the nightmare nested in her hair. With limited resources I whipped out my nail clippers, and trying to save as many strands as I could, I cut out the dread…After a nail biting 45 minutes, Megan was free and we laid the guilty hair to rest in the bin, hoping our guesthouse owners wouldn’t wonder where the hell it had come from.
We woke the next morning to catch an early sunrise, although this was to be hidden behind a peninsula on the west of the bay, allowing us only to watch the cloudy sky light up. A few hours more sleep, and we headed to the No. 1 Dewmini Roti Shop for a breakfast of banana and chocolate Roti- wow it was good! Completely living up to its reputation, we headed back that night for a curry too! (Sadly my stomach was still not settled so I couldn’t fully enjoy it). After a while at the beach, the day became overcast and rainy and so we took the executive decision that another massage was definitely needed. Off to the Secret Root Spa we went for a full body massage and steam bath. And when I say full body- i mean full body. Completely Butt Naked. (This was only me as my masseuse seemed more persistent about me removing my knickers that Megan’s was.) We headed to bed in our lovely little guesthouse for our last night rested and relaxed and feeling satisfied that we had experienced all Mirissa had to offer.
|Secret Root Spa|
|Bay of Mirissa|