Back on The Road in Sri Lanka


I can’t believe it’s been over a year since I returned back from my adventures back to the daily grind of life.  It initially was difficult to come back and start working after not needing to pay attention to a calendar.  But you easily get back into the routine and can’t believe how the refreshed feeling easily gets replaced by the daily stresses.  Not surprisingly, it took me a while to save up and get back out there to travel.  Unfortunately, this next trip was just a short one, but a much needed one.   My friend and I headed to Sri Lanka to escape the cold dreariness of the UK during winter.  We decided to take in some culture, some wildlife, some hill country and some beaches.  Sri Lanka is known for having some beautiful beaches and while the popular ones are getting developed, you can find miles of coast that are untouched.  It was here, on one of these beaches, that we were able to take part in some fishing with locals as they went about their normal daily lives.

We found ourselves on the beach of Tangalle which was an interesting beach town.  Despite the fact that there were guesthouses lining the coast, more foreigners were to be found in the town than on the actual beach.  Maybe because it was a dumping beach, which I love, the people came to just relax but stayed out of the water.

Playing tug of war with the sea

Playing tug of war with the sea

On our first morning in Tangalle, on our way to explore the coast and grab some breakfast, we were called over to help by some fisherman.  Of course, these men call out to all the tourists who walk past them; and some continue walking while others help for a few minutes. My friend and I helped for 30 minutes.  These fisherman who were doing their days work, had cast a large net in the sea by boat and on the beach had 2 lines of men pulling a never ending line of fishing net.  For 30 minutes we kept on pulling on this net and pulling and pulling thinking that we’d never see the end.  On each side, one was man was the anchor for the net and the rest of the people pulled on the rope like we were playing tug of war with the sea.

The catch is in!

The catch is in!

When the actual net finally surfaced on the beach, we were more happy than the fisherman.  We may not have been benefiting from the catch but we were finally finished and about to see the fruits of our effort.  The net was substantive in size and within it was fish of all different varieties; mainly small little fishes, but there were squid, jelly fishes, tuna, and medium sized fish, but we didn’t have any large catches that day.



IMG_0876Once the net made it to the sand, we stood back and gave way to the fisherman to do their job.  They went about collecting and sorting fish.  Half of the catch would be sold, we were told, while the other half would be split amongst the men who had worked to take home.  It was interesting to see how they distributed the fish amongst themselves.  Everyone helped to collect the fish into one communal bag and then an elder handed out the fish equally to the fisherman.  While this was happening, some the guesthouse and restaurant owners started to congregate so that they could purchase some of the fresh catch.  This included our guesthouse owner.  One of the younger fisherman, took some time to show us the different fish in the net and decided to collect for us some squid.  He handed them off to our guesthouse owner.  That night we were able to eat the squid that we worked so hard to catch 🙂

Sharing the day's catch

Sharing the day’s catch