Sri Lankan Buddha

Spires over Colombo.

Sri Lanka fascinated me for years. Ceylon. Serendib. A pearl. A tear drop. The island has existed behind a virtual veil for much of the world. While it had seen a trickle of Germans and other travellers, it was overall a place less seen, ravaged for so long by war and internal strife.  Even though I once lived a stone’s throw away at the southern point of India, it was a place that escaped me – for at that time thing were at at one of their most dangerous points, in an ongoing struggle with many peaks and valleys.

Today Sri Lanka opens its doors. The influx of tourists that will tread its tea plantations, beaches, ancient monuments, jungles and countless attractions will be massive.

The way in which peace was ‘won’ is contentious, to put it mildly. I don’t wish to gloss over the events and I have known those who lost loved ones and whose families were torn apart. But anyone who visits the nation today will be met by so many moments of beauty, of heritage, of sacred expression, and yes, still, of contrast.

I snapped the photo above in such a moment. The spires of ancient and modern, sacred and secular spoke to me in that closing hour.