Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Ateneo-La Salle rivalry, an afternoon at the ancient Dambulla Caves and champagne in the middle of nowhere

Some of Travelife's readers and friends
at the entrance of the Dambulla Caves today

This is so not funny.

I'm supposed to be getting more sleep in this beautiful hotel in the middle of nowhere in Sri Lanka as it's so peaceful and calming; but instead we cut our sleep time by a couple more hours again, as a whole group of us sat on some sofas on a verandah of the Kandalama Hotel, drinking bottles of champagne, talking travel and living a Travelife.


We flew Thai Airways
to Sri Lanka via Bangkok.


Today was Day Two of our trip to Sri Lanka with Travelife readers and friends.

It began with breakfast at a decent hour at an airport hotel, where a lot of us sat at a very long table by the breakfast buffet, lingering over the food and talking about Ateneo vs. La Salle.

On my past two trips, the Ateneans had vastly outnumbered the La Sallites in everything.

Two years ago, I went to Sri Lanka with five guys, and four of them were rabid Ateneans. You can imagine what happened to the lone La Sallite.

I'd said to him then: "Sorry, but you're on your own."

Then, ten months ago, we had the Ateneo-La Salle thing again with two guys. But since I sided with the Blues again, the La Sallite lost every school conversation.

We stopped by this picturesque lake
on the way to Dambulla


On this trip, it seems that the La Sallites are keeping up and actually even winning the school argument ocassionally. There's enough of them on this trip to hold the fort.

All in good fun, of course; but this school thing certainly broke the ice on our first breakfast together in Sri Lanka.


And tonight was supposed to be an early night to catch up on sleep, since we'd arrived really early in the morning today, from Bangkok.

But two tables of our group were left at dinner, along with two bottles of champagne. And isn't that a perfect combination?

We ended up talking for a couple more hours and finding a million more connections between everyone in the group, as we sat outside enjoying the rather surreal feeling of downing champagne and relaxing in a pretty luxurious setting, in the middle of nowhere in an exotic destination in the world.

It's really a small but wonderful world...


The last time this happened, I'd been sitting on top of a jeep at sunset, and we'd been parked right next to a cliff in the Sabi Sands area of Greater Kruger National Park in South Africa, drinking champagne and munching on biltong.

This was on a trip to South Africa last November.

We'd had lots more champagne in South Africa after that day.

In fact, we'd had champagne everyday and at every opportunity. But this was the most exotic setting I can remember until today, living a never-ending and never-endingly eventful Travelife in beautiful Sri Lanka.

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