Monitor Lizards

One day in Sri Lanka when we were heading from one city to the next the driver pulled over so we could see the monitor lizards along the side of the ride on the river bank.  We have monitor lizards in Malaysia and Singapore, but these are bigger than the ones I am used to seeing.  The ones in Malaysia were more of a tan/gray color.  They didn’t have patterns on them.

Here in Sri Lanka they are thought to be bad luck. If one walks in your front door and out your back door you are supposed to have bad luck.  I’m thinking if your house was that close to a river in a place that floods as well as Sri Lanka does, you are guaranteed to have bad luck.

P.S. I was playing around with iMovie backgrounds. Didn’t realize until this movie rendered that the map in the background has a pin right in Sri Lanka!

On the Road

We hired a driver and van from Kangaroo Cabs (  for our entire time in Sri Lanka.  There are not many airports in Sri Lanka so if you need to travel cross country you drive or take a train. We opted for driving so that we could visit many temples.

The guide book warned that you really didn’t want to drive yourself in Sri Lanka due to the idiosyncratic road rules and heavy traffic. It didn’t take us long to agree and to appreciate our driver’s skill. The small three-wheeled vehicles were everywhere. Most looked new.  Some seemed to be taxis and others family vehicles.

Notice in the brief glimpses of the roadside, how the buildings are set right on the curb.  No maneuvering room at all. 

Riding the Elephant

Here is a brief video of the ride. I now understand why people used those little chairs on top of elephants.  The elephants are very wide.  The mahuts sit ride behind the ears. That would be a bit easier.

I’m glad these elephants have a safe home here in the sanctuary, but it doesn’t look like a fun life, not with the chains around their necks and the chains around their back legs.  However, it is better than a life on the streets. At least here they are well fed and have a river to bathe in.

Feeding the Elephant

In early January Kent and I went to Sri Lanka with his cousin Beth and her husband. near the end of our trip we stopped at an elephant sanctuary near Kandy. After a very brief elephant ride and photos we the elephant, John was kind enough to purchase food and feed the elephant. I enjoyed the elephant’s enthusiasm.

January 16: Organized


My spring cleaning officially began today.  I started with our bookshelf.  I culled books to be given to the PTA for their annual sale.  I organized what was left and even made sure there was empty space on each shelf.

Also tackled was all the clutter in the kitchen  and my scary storage cupboard in the bedroom.  All recycling was carried down to the bins in the car park.  

Before I went to the US I did clear out my closets and dresser so I guess the cleaning officially started then. I probably won’t do more until our long weekend over the Chinese New Year.

Epic Fail

'臺北樹蛙 Rhacophorus taipeianus Liang & Wang, 1978'

Cast on for a new pair of socks today,  Lace Wings Fixation socks.  First I cast on wrong for knitting two at a time on two circulars.  Recast on and managed to twist one sock when I joined them. Cast on again. Finish cuff. Start pattern. Think, “Gee, these are looking really big.”  Reread pattern.  I’m knitting on US #5 needles, not 5 mm.  Time to frog.


P.S.  After the next cast on I had to move one sock to the other needle because I had them set up wrong for knitting two socks at a time on two circular needles.

Photo Credits
臺北樹蛙 Rhacophorus taipeianus Liang & Wang, 1978