Second innings

“I long, as does every human being, to be at home wherever I find myself.” – Maya Angelou

16th December, 2016

This is the last day of the term and my last day at SVS. I’ve had a last day of term before but this one is bittersweet. Today also marks my end of term with SVS School. On the one hand, there is an excitement to go back home to Mumbai and meet my family and friends, on the other, there are tearful farewells with all the students. Some of them try to convince me to stay another term. I know that’s not possible. Lots of goodbyes.

img_730329th December 2016 – 8th January 2017

I’m on the plane from Colombo heading back to my hometown of Mumbai. I’m already reminiscing about my wonderful time in Sri Lanka.  The people I’ve met, the places I’ve been to, and most important of all, the delicious food I will no longer be able to savour.  No more kottu, no more veggie curry, no more crunchy sambol to adorn my coconut infused rotis.  As we touchdown, I can’t help but notice that the skies are cloudy and grey. I already miss the idyllic blue skies native to my beloved home away from home.  Adjusting back to life here doesn’t take very long and I did miss some things while I was away.  Especially my friends and of course, the food. But what I did not miss was the onslaught of people and of course the dreadful traffic that pervades daily life here. I missed having that edge of excitement that I woke up to before every class.  Or the enthusiasm I felt at the beginning of every weekend before I would venture out to the beach or visit the mountains.

I knew that I had to get back to Sri Lanka. I got in touch with Sebastian and Mark at SVS School and asked them to let me know if there were any opportunities for me to come back to SVS for another term. I wasn’t too sure if I’d get a positive answer but to my surprise, they said I could! They asked me if I could be back in 2 days’ time so I could start the term on the 9th of January. That meant that I had to leave the next day. Literally, the next day! A rush of excitement came over me and I thought of all the possibilities.  I told my mum, whose first reaction was “How are you going to pack your bags and get everything you need in a day?”  But it seemed right, Sri Lanka opened itself back up to me and my heart said yes.  After about five minutes of talking logistics, the answer was assuredly, yes.

I booked my ticket almost instantaneously.  Packed my bags and once again said a few rushed goodbyes and ‘alvida’ to India.  I’m on my way back to the island under the sun.  This time I hope to have new adventures in uncharted territories and visit my old hangout spots.  (Maskeliya!)  I am especially excited about seeing former students and meeting new ones in the classroom.  And on that subject, I hope to improve my teaching skills as I revisit this role once again.

img_65249th January 2017 – Present

Thankfully I’m teaching a course that I’ve already taught before so that I don’t have to worry too much about not having enough time to prepare. I did meet some of my previous students, who were, as I’d predicted, shocked to see me. Since I’ve been back I’ve already visited Maskeliya, eaten loads of Kottu and coconut sambol and other favourites. Next weekend being a long weekend, (due to full moon, celebrated here as Poya Day. Only in Sri Lanka.) we plan to visit Dambulla cave temple and Sigiriya, places that I have wanted to visit and now have been given the chance to do so. Life is good!

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