It’s over and out for now!  Our fabulous trip to Sri Lanka has come to an end, and we’re homeward bound to hugs from family and friends – bittersweet.  

The last week has been as action packed as ever, and wonderfully we think we’ve found a couple of projects for the Owl Centre Charity to partner up with, this being our primary objective – well, and to have fun, and come home happy and healthy.  (Marianne’s last trip to Sri Lanka involved being attacked by leeches and her brother being found head to toe in blood, and the time before, her friend had a mild heart attack, needing to be admitted to a far flung, rather basic Sri Lankan hospital.  No such dramas for us although I have been on meds this week for a ‘gammy’ eye – hence fewer photos of me you’ll be pleased to hear. Ha!).

Just after one of our meetings where it was so hot, both of us felt wobbly.
Gammy eye – like the guy from the Goonies!

To tell you a little bit more about the projects; One is up in the hill country where the tea plantations grow – a support centre for children with disabilities that reaches out to about 1000 ‘hard to reach’ families from the local villages, and the second is a school for children with autism in Colombo.  Both projects are incredibly keen and passionate about their work and also proactive from a raising awareness / advocacy perspective.  While we were in Sri Lanka, the staff and parents organised a beach clean in Colombo to raise awareness of autism.  The event was great and very well attended.  The beach was pretty littered though, probably because it was right next to the mouth of a river, but it put me right off having a swim in the sea afterwards.  And to add fuel to the fire, a local also mentioned that there’d been a fatal crocodile attack there a couple of years ago – so yeah, thanks but no thanks to that swim … yikes!

Talking of sea creatures, we have had an interesting week of sea life spotting.  One day, we saw a rather large monitor lizard strolling out of the sea, as well as a number of huge hermit crabs.  We even swam with a giant turtle in a horseshoe bay.  It came right up to us looking for food, and when you’re snorkelling right next to it, it’s a pretty impressive, and slightly intimidating, sight but one I will cherish forever!  

Turtle Beach
Monitor Lizard
Hermit Crab

We’re chuffed to bits though with what we’ve achieved and now the hard work begins; How to launch and build a charity?  This is new territory for us so any ideas will be warmly welcomed.  For starters, we’ll put our very best fundraising hats-on and crack on, and I’ll up-date you more broadly about the Owl Centre and The Owl Centre charity in the coming weeks from the blog.  Sending you a very happy Easter, and toodle pip for now from Nic x

Homeward Bound!