The lady on the bunk bed below me came in at some ridiculous hour and wouldn’t stop squirming. A quick chat in the morning and I had pieced together that she had gone clubbing and stumbled in to the hostel for a bed. That’s all well and good for her that she has the money to throw around like that, but my hard earned sleep was interrupted and I gave up trying to pretend at 05:00. Thus, I left an anniversary postcard under Katherine’s pillow with some chocolate – the ice, cold, air conditioned room enabling this rare treat – and caught up on some finances on the iPad.
Breakfast and blogs complete, we headed off on our merry adventure to collect Nicola from the airport. The bus from the fort to the airport which should have been 45mins to an hour, took in total 2hrs 5mins, with us moving a significant total of 1km in 45mins – some dignitary was visiting some of the towns on this particular route and traffic ground to a halt. It was a silly mistake to assume we’d be there in no time at all, and we hadn’t brought any water with us. Ouch!
With personal name card in the arrival hall and printed itinerary in hand we collected Nicola and went down the road to collect the rental car from Europcar. Kat and Nic caught up on gossip while I listened to a couple returning their vehicle argue about how they shouldn’t have been fined by a policeman earlier that week and the paperwork was supposed to have been sorted yesterday. Stupidly long time later we were headed down the road and in to the town by the airport to get some water and check to see if the ‘check engine light’ would turn off. It stayed off until about 20m past the junction off the expressway (typical eh!?).
The (automatic) car stalled several times at the toll booth, the traffic lights and the roundabouts, each place getting significantly scarier and more stressful as we drove further into Colombo capital. I wanted to get safely to the hostel and get the manager or staff (who are fantastic) to help call Europcar to have it sorted. A seamlessly painless call by the concierge and they were sending out a replacement car, no questions asked. It was all a little too suspicious for our likings. They clearly knew it was a dodgy car!
I had to wait for the new car to arrive and sort out the additional paperwork so I waved goodbye to the dastardly duo and I set about repacking my bag, now that I was restocked with make-up and electronics. Thanks Nic xx!
A fancy new car arrived at 17:15 while everything was in heaps of a mess in the dorm room, but I had to grab the important stuff and get in a test drive before they left. He wasn’t impressed with me pulling down one way streets and having the car tick over in idle, but I couldn’t face the long drive the next day with anything temperamental. All sorted, I cleared up the mess and awaited the others return from the city.
Saturday 13th February 2016