I know I said I was going to give an update when I got back, but things have been rather hectic what with trying to sort stuff for the Somerset party this weekend.
Oh, and work, as always.
Anyhow, if I gave you a complete update, you would be reading an entry that would rival the length of the latest Harry Potter book, though somewhat lacking in magical adventure, so I think a quick run-down of the highlights and lowlights should probably cover it.
Lets start with the lowlights...
- Crap restaurant service on fixed menu services
- The rooms suffered from damp
- They put us in Deluxe rooms and told us they were Superior
- The corridor roof fell down
- There was a handful of staff that short-changed us on the exchange (mere pennies, but thats not the point)
- They didn't get that the bride didn't want daisies in the bouquets
- The rep was hopeless at getting things done
- In some areas, they didn't treat the elephants as well as you might expect
So what about the highlights?
- The wedding, of course!
It was a nice ceremony on the beach with around 30 friends and family, plus another 30+ people watching from the balconies of the hotel, followed by a nice meal in the garden with disco. They then opened the hotel club specially for the wedding party ... complete with armed guard!!
- They drive like nutters out there!
Seriously, they are crazy. I complain about UK drivers, but these guys would wipe the floor with them.
As one TukTuk driver commented to my Dad, "Me, Jenson Button", before tearing away at high speed on his reserve tank and dodging traffic like he was the hero in an action movie.
- The food was great (though I believe the hotel at Hunas Falls in Kandy put this to shame, as well as the level of service and quality of the rooms).
- Excellent weather. There was some rain, but for the most part, it cleared up pretty quick. I even got a tan, though that's on its way out already :-(
- Sitting at the pool bar sipping cocktails
- Sitting in the lounge bar sipping JD and coke
- A handful of bar staff who seemed to enjoy the company. They're probably drumming the bar now wondering where all the interesting folk have gone ;-)
- Teaching the bar staff either how to make the cocktails properly or how to make new ones: if Ferrari Jack appears on the cocktail list, you can thank me for that!!
- Meeting Charles, a shopkeep on the road to the hotel. Such a nice guy that he made more business out of us than anyone else there, and even got extra money because people felt sorry for him!
- Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery. Gorgeous baby turtles that we were allowed to hold and some disabled turtles that would die in the wild.
One thing I didn't realise was how sensitive a turtle's shell is: one of the turtles was ticklish and would flip around in the water when you rubbed his shell!!
- Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage. Seeing the elephants roaming around freely was fantastic, and the opportunity to get close and make a fuss was amazing.
The only downside was the ones that were chained: one I assume because he was blind so they don't want him walking into things, and two babies for a public feeding session.
- The variety of wildlife around the place: water monitor lizards, crocodiles, geckos ... and chipmunks that apparently like cola bottles!
- Playing with the aerobie on the beach. Well, for five minutes, anyway. After it went into the sea, we never saw it again because the undercurrent was so strong, so it is probably part of the coral now.
- Drinking in Wunderbar just down the coast
- Sunshine Water Sports Centre! These guys are great: fun, friendly and professional.
- Making great new friends: Geoff, Laura, Rob, Shelley and Sas.
- Getting to know the family I hardly see.
- Geoff! I know, I've already mentioned him in a post, but he kept us entertained most nights with his terrible jokes - it was more in the delivery than the joke itself :-)
- Not having to think of work for two whole weeks. Bliss!
Holiday over :-(
* * * * *Probably the most interesting part about coming back to work is discovering that my colleague Ismail had handed his notice in and so left the company earlier today. Whilst this wasn't too much of a surprise as he wasn't a happy chappy, it was a bolt from the blue when Vanessa handed her notice in last Friday!
Three people in as many months. Doesn't exactly look good, does it?!