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Day at the cricket in Galle

It was perfect blue sky today, not a cloud in sight. It would have been the perfect day to surf or sit by the beach or pool with a book. However, I knew that Hubby wanted to do something diifferent! It’s what he has been wanting to do since we arrived in Galle. Watch Sri Lanka’s M Muralitharan play his last test match as he is retiring.

Now before I go on, I know some of you may think I’m crazy! Cricket? How could I? Well I never thought I could! I love watching sports – basketball, tennis, football, hockey – you name it. I love watching the One Day International (ODI) cricket but it took a while for me to get ‘hooked’ on test matches! Cricket is not the most exciting game. I agree that it can be boring, like watching the grass grow or paint dry. I am not going to argue or convince you why you should watch it.

I enjoy it because it is social! You go with friends, drink beer, eat meat pies and sausage rolls and be social. And if they annoy you, open a book and be immersed until you hear people cheering and you know someone is out! It’s a great day to be with friends, soak in some sun, sit out doors and well… Drink beer 🙂

We got up late this morning which I knew annoyed Hubby. He wouldn’t even let me have a proper breakfast at the hotel or anywhere for that matter! I could sense the eagerness and anticipation of getting to the ground! He loves watching the players come onto the ground and watch that first ball of play! So I suggested we go to Serendipity Cafe to get some takeaway sandwiches so we could eat it at the match. It wasn’t even worth taking a photo as by the time I sat down to eat it, it was cold and hard! We both ordered the toasted cheese, tomato and basil sandwich. 3 pieces of toast, with mango chutney and fresh basil – if it was fresh it would have been fantastic!

We got to the ground and paid 500 rupees each (which is equivalent to $5AUD) to sit at the nicer stands in the shade! Hubby was definitely excited and was ready to soak in some cricket!!

It was Murali’s final test match. He was going to become the world’s first bowler with 800 Test wickets, which is a great achievement! You could tell he was loved by the spectators and fans. Full size posters of Murali everywhere!

We saw Murali take four wickets, he had two from yesterday and needed another two wickets to achieve that landmark. We would love to see him achieve this as it would be one of the greatest achievements in cricket!

I know I know, I am probably boring you but I would like to be able to say that ‘I was at that match when Murali took his 800th wicket!’ Like the time when Hubby and I watched one of the greatest football player Messi score that amazing goal which was compared to Maradona. I am glad to be able to say that ‘I was at that game’.

Hubby was glued to the game. We spent almost the whole day there, met some friendly Sri Lankans and had a great time chatting and drinking beer! We met some British people also, but alas we were the only Australian / Asian there.

We left before stumps (end of play) to hit the pool and swim.

Of course by this time it’s 4pm and I have not had lunch! The problem with travelling with Hubby is that he is never hungry!

Unfortunately, it started to pour as we were getting ready to head out for dinner and being the lazy people we are, ordered room service! I couldn’t go pass the butter chicken masala with roti and cucumber and yogurt salad. The chicken was tender and succulent. The butter chicken masala was a little spicy which gave it a nice kick. Roti dipped in the butter chicken masala was tasty and absolutely satisfying! It was definitely what I needed.

Hubby ordered the blue fin tuna with couscous and mango and cucumber salad. The blue fin tuna was seared and cut into cubes. It was served warm and separately from the couscous. The couscous was a little bland on its own but with a bit of my curry, it went down well. I wasn’t a huge fan of the blue fin but the butter chicken masala was a winner!

Ravenous, I indulged and ate in less than 5 mins! The problem with being too hungry is that I tend to eat too fast! Serious indigestion and food coma!

GA’s ratings: 7 / 10

Galle Fort Hotel Dining
No. 28 Church Street
Fort, Galle, Sri Lanka
Ph: +94 91 223 2870

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2007 Cricket World Cup Holiday….

I was going through some photos and couldn’t help but reminisce about the Cricket World Cup (‘CWC’). It’s been almost 3 years and the next CWC is on again next year (well every 4 years!). This time last year we were talking about whether or not we should go and I am wondering whether Hubby is talking to his mates again about whether or not we should go next year!

The 2007 CWC was held in the West Indies and how can one say no to that? Caribbean? Beach? Sun? Warmth? Of course I wasn’t going to refuse!! Hubby sold it to me by saying “It would probably be cheaper if we got around the world ticket and I am thinking Caribbean, New York, Barcelona and Rome” – again HOW CAN I SAY NO?!?!?!

I was a casual cricket fan prior to meeting hubby – I enjoyed watching the one day match but not so much the 5 day test series. However, ever since dating Hubby I have grown to love cricket and actually enjoy watching it. Like him – I ‘could’ sit there for 5 days and watch something that may or may not have a result at the end of 5 days. I even follow the game online whilst at work, and make sure that the TV in the boardroom is on the cricket channel! The difference though, between Hubby and I, is that, if someone called to go out I would say yes… he would definitely say NO!

For those of you who don’t know what cricket is, please see wikipedia’s definition of cricket here. It would take me forever to explain it! I do understand why some people find it boring, some might even say that it is like ‘watching the grass grow’. You either love it or you hate it!

Our first stop was NY – which was fantastic – won’t talk about NY as it’s not about NY! We then went to Puerto Rico to go to Caribbean and first stop is Antigua! Antigua – an island in the West Indies, in the Leeward Islands in the Caribbean region. We were at Saint John, where the cricket was held but it wasn’t just about the cricket! It was a group of friends (roughly about 10 – 12 ppl) spending some quality time together – watching the cricket, eating, sightseeing, sun bathing and most importantly – getting to know each and every one of them!

Antigua – GORGEOUS – the sun, the beach and we were extremely lucky with the weather! We stayed in a little villa close to the water. We went for a stroll down the river / lake and the boys wanted to go to the island across the river and thought they would swim across.

Here they are swimming…

Before one of them, T, decided to stand up and yelled out ‘dude….we can walk’. All the respective partners were watching in awe – thinking what idiots and that boys will be just that… BOYS!

And so they all stood up and walked across.

And made it to the other side!

Boys… will be BOYS!

This is one of the beaches where we spent countless hours lazing under the sun.

And here is a view of the sunset… simply stunning!

From memory, we saw two games in Antigua – both not very exciting! I think the whole experience of the beach and sun bathing was a lot more appealing.

Next stop – Grenada – I think we also saw two games here – one of which was NZ vs England – see the kiwi supporters.

I have an extremely soft spot for the English team – Freddie Flintoff – one of my favourite players!

On the days we weren’t watching cricket, we would go to the beach…again! The boys (well Hubby mainly) made up a game which involved a cricket bat and a tennis ball. None of the partners really cared, as we laid down reading our magazines / books and enjoying the sun!

The game didn’t last long, as the next thing I knew, they were body surfing!!!!

I think they got bored of body surfing, as some weren’t very good, so they decided to test their co-ordination and climb this tree…

We stayed at the beach from morning till dawn. Of course we didn’t sit there all day, we got food, drinks, and then came back to the beach. My favourite photo, taken by yours truly…..

We didn’t really do much in Grenada either, except for relaxing, drinking, and eating. It was one of the most relaxing holiday I have ever had. Here’s another pic of the beach.. it was simply gorgeous. If only I could be there again right now!

I do recall staying in a rather ‘dodgy’ place in Grenada – there weren’t many choices as we left it quite late. We stayed at this motel, about 20 USD a night per room and well – lets just say that it was WORTH 20 USD! We all had ‘guests’ in the bathroom…  for me, it was the most unpleasant experience, as this ‘guest’ would just watch me every time I was in there, it was rather unsettling to be honest! Meet our guests ….

As you can see – he / she was rather ugly …

The other travelers kicked on to Barbados for more sun / cricket / beach, however, Hubby and I went to Barcelona and Rome. We would never have gone to the Caribbean if it wasn’t for the cricket and friends. I am ‘secretly’ hoping that we are going to go to the 2011 CWC, if not, the IPL with friends. I have only been to Chennai in India and would SO LOVE to see the rest of India. It’s not every year that you can get a group of friends together to travel. I know that the 2007 CWC took the boys a good 6 – 8 months to organize. Who was going to buy which tickets, who was going to book the accommodation, who was going to bring what..etc. I have to admit – I did absolutely nothing. I made sure I applied for leave and was there with sun screen, and bathers! It was one fabulous trip I will never forget!

I also just asked Hubby if we were going to the 2011 CWC? He said ‘No’ … but “WHY” I thought and before he gave me a chance to ask he said ‘BUT we will be going to either the IPL or the ICC World Twenty20’ – FANTASTIC!! Let me know if you want to come… I think Hubby may be in the process of getting the crew together again!