Hey, my name is Mantas. I’m from Lithuania. I’m studying online business, web design, and practicing martial arts. My arrival in Sri Lanka was so long because I had to take 3 different flights to come here and when I arrived my EP buddy met me at the airport. Then we went to the EP house to meet the other volunteers. The event we had at the EP house was cool. We tried different traditional foods, talked with one another and I had a really good time because everyone was so friendly.
Personally, I didn’t feel any cultural shock because I knew what to expect so every trouble I faced was very unique. And it became really easy for me to adapt to the situation even though I had to face my first trouble on the very first day I got here, which was getting into quarantine with a social media ban in the country. But that was a really good experience. I didn’t even care that we got power cuts every day because then we had more time without social media. For others, there were so many problems because they were so scared of rats and other little animals. It was a good experience and I think the people who took care of us gave everything they could give. So I really enjoyed having that opportunity to feel how the locals live and feel. It was much better than staying at a hotel and swimming in the pool.
The new year event we had was really nice because everyone there spoke really good English and they were very friendly. The good thing about the event was that we were divided into different teams so I was not with other volunteers but with the AIESECers. And because of that, I got into a lot of really good conversations. The food was amazing as always. For the first time in my life, I was in an atmosphere where I was dancing and really enjoying it with no alcohol. Everyone was very chill. One of the best days of my time in Sri Lanka.
The city tour we had on the next day was also special to me because I met more people once again. We visited the church and a lot of other places in Colombo. It was really nice. I loved the place where we had our lunch, on the balcony of CCC with an amazing view. The other AIESECers who took care of us were really interesting students. I’m very happy that I met them and I will never forget them.
On one weekend I also visited Mirissa to try surfing but unfortunately, I couldn’t because of a back problem. But it was a really beautiful city and for the first time I had a beach party there and it was really amazing. Then I visited Galle with a local and had juice and a little walk around the city.
My workplace in Induruwa is alright. It’s a clean little turtle farm with very friendly workers and they really know what they are doing. They have a lot of experience and because of that we are having a good opportunity to learn everything about turtles from people who have worked in this field for 30+ years.
And what I can say about the project is that it can be much shorter than how it is now because in this project we don’t work the whole day since there is nothing much to do especially when there are already a lot of workers present. For us, it’s not a problem that we have a lot of free time. I think the problem we have is that we live in the middle of nowhere. In Induruwa we can’t do any other activity because if we want to then we have to travel to another city. Where we are staying, there are only local people, one wine store, a couple of restaurants, and the turtle farm. But for me, I think it’s alright.
Altogether I’m having a magical time in Sri Lanka and I’m so happy to be here and do what I’m doing. I think these are the best weeks of my life so far.