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Bathtub Safari

The sunlit grasslands danced with the wind, as a lone butterfly rode the breeze right onto page 31 of my favourite Fitzgerald novel. It startled me for a second, as I was soaking in my alfresco “wild bath” in the middle of nowhere, and didn’t quite expect company. The curious butterfly seemingly got bored of page 31 and moved along, just as I was about to reach across to my bathtub caddy for the camera. Instead, I picked up my glass of wine, and watched what could only be described as a Bathtub Safari unfold.

A Blue-tailed Bee-eater swarm filled the open skies, treetops shook with Giant Squirrels, a choir of birds – with the Indian Pond Heron and Sri Lankan Swallow taking soprano and tenor – warmed my ears, and a faint rustling from the bush could only mean either a Sambar or Elephant! Suddenly, almost as if all wildlife unanimously sensed I was about to read page 32, a peacock darted across the grasslands with a gusto of being fiercely chased. I immediately clamber onto my knees and reach for the camera, suds noisily avalanche out the sides of the bathtub, and I got ready for a most peculiar photo shoot; I was essentially in a bathtub, in 2260-acre savannah, hoping that it was in fact an elephant that galvanized a random peacock out of its afternoon nap.

Alas! It was just a clever ploy to keep me from reading 32. Nonetheless, the anti-climax was worth it since, right after, a second peacock bolted across the grasslands. I effortlessly snapped a few pictures, half expecting that, for my luck, I merely captured a magnificent blur. Fortunately it was much worse than that; the camera had been turned off the whole time.

I promptly blamed that butterfly for starting a chain of events that lead me to the most meta and anticlimactic moment of my Ahaspokuna experience. Long story short, this is why there are no accompanying pictures and the Ahaspokuna Safari Camps staff had to use whatever they had on hand to tell this story.

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A H A S - P O K U N A

In the Sinhalese language (spoken in Sri Lanka), “Ahas” means “Sky” and “Pokuna” means “Pond” or “Pool”. Ahaspokuna is so named in reference to the lake here, high up in the hills, that is only fed by rain water. A former settlement that sprung up on its shores was subsequently also named “Ahaspokuna”. Today, the jungle tide has washed over where people once lived and the camp provides a wilderness retreat for those in search of something different.
Ahaspokuna by Eco Team



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