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“If Life were predictable it would cease to be Life and be without Flavour”

 A Quote which perfectly describes my Sri Lanka IDYE experience.

It all started when we were asked for our names for Sri Lanka IDYEP and all 5 names for IDYEP were already submitted, my name being in the waiting list, but as the quote implies Life is unpredictable and there I was on the night of 15th Oct with my fellow Rotaracters, Strangers who later become good friends, all Five of us at the Pune Airport boarding our flight to Sri Lanka, a first ever IDYE from our District 3131.

Our group was of five members Tanishka, Priyanka, Sonal, Sarab, and me. I was honestly kind of nervous as it was my first time journey international, but was relieved I was not alone and the remaining doubt disappeared when we were welcomed in a Sri Lankan way at Bandaranaike International Airport with White Lotus on the morning of 16th Oct by Rtr. Shehani Leo and Rtr. Nipun Alwis and the beautiful journey in Lanka begins.

Our First stay was in Colombo, the commercial capital and a city with long colonial history,  i.e., on 16th and 17th which started with the breakfast, a lot of it, we had String Hoppers and Chicken curry, loved it. After breakfast we checked in to our hotels and get freshen up followed by Lunch. Delicious Lamprais in lunch made my day followed by shopping at CCC mall and meeting other members of rotaract family. On Second day we visited Gangaramaya Temple, Lanksala followed by Joint meeting, letterhead exchanges, and dinner with DRR Krishan Bala,  Rtr. Dina and other Rotaract Family made a lot of friends there. The next day we visited Independence Square and set out for Kandy.

It was 18th when we travelled to Kandy, our second step of IDYE. Kandy, a city situated in the mountains of Sri Lanka with mesmerizing natural beauty with a great historical background. In Kandy we were welcomed by Rtr. Kenneth, Rtr. Rehan, Rtr. Lahiru, and Rtr. Kevin, get freshen up and went to dinner after which we took a walk around the lake where Rtr. Rehan Rtr. Kevin and Rtr. Pahan explained us about The Sacred Tooth Relic Temple, its history, and the famous Perahara festival. We also visited Arthur’s Chair on our way back to hotel where we took lot of pictures. On the following day we had a native breakfast with variety of dishes after which we visited Bahirawakanda Temple, University of Peradeniya and the most important Sri Dalada Maligawa or the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, followed by dinner and letterhead exchanges.

Next day that’s on 20th we get ready and move towards our third and last step of the IDYE, we travelled to Negombo, that too by train we witness a mesmerizing scenic beauty of Mother Nature on the way towards Negombo, a city with Dutch history, trade, and Fishery. We were received by Rtr. Nimish and other rotaracters on our way to refreshments we visited St. Sebastian Church, were the unfortunate bombing took place, we offered our prayers to the victims and their families.

Then we had our breakfast consisting delicious Chicken Sandwiches and went on to see Dutch fort and Brown’s beach, we also had a heavy Lunch with a lots of varieties of Fish, Curries, Rice and Salad, thanks to Rtr. Shivanta for this, after lunch we had our letterhead exchanges.

Now came the most hard and heart breaking moment, time to return back to India, end of IDYEP. We feel so much welcomed and loved by everyone whom we meet that the bond we made in such short time is special and unbreakable, every time we move to another city we felt like we are leaving our loved ones and now we were to leave for India we were happy but with moist eyes. Even right now while writing I am getting Nostalgic with all the beautiful memories we carried from Sri Lanka.

 I just wish we could stay for more time with you guys. Lastly I would like to thanks – DRR Krishan Bala, Dina, Nipun, Shehani, Sajani, Rashmika, Pasan, Haadiya, Tashiya, Shanithi, Piyumi, Rashmi, Keith, Saseni, Kenneth, Pahan, Rehan, Lahiru, Fawaz, Kevin, Angelo, Nimish, Samith, Lassith, Rajeev, Dilky, Thilaan, Nipuni, Padmisri, Aloka, and the list goes on….

Thank you all for such memorable experience.

धन्यवाद श्रीलंका!

Rtr. Avadhut Patil, Rotaract Club of Panvel Sunrise – RID 3131

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