The Finish Line... But Not The End: 23 March 2024

Tangalle, Sri Lanka

We've done it!

Team Mama's Boys has made it to the Rickshaw Run's finish line in Tangalle! With the click and hiss of three tall ice-cold cans of Lion Lager, we toasted to our successful adventure as we stood on the tropical golden sands of the beach of southernmost Sri Lanka.

But let's back up to this morning...

The morning dawned warm and bright, and we were jolted awake by the shrill and horrible screeching of the wild peacocks who populate Sri Lanka's south.

If you've never been around peacocks, count yourself lucky - you would be surprised at the noises they make. For such majestic birds, the noises coming out of their mouths sound like a colicky baby crying.

After our rude awakening, we took a walk down to the beach. The fishermen were getting ready to head out for the day, and they were launching their boats from the shore off into the Indian Ocean.

The warm brown waters of the sea looked inviting, but we had been warned not to try swimming there; the sea on this part of the southern coast had a very strong current and was dangerous for swimmers.

Returning to the hotel, we had breakfast and took a morning dip in the pool. Today was going to be our first truly relaxed day, and we had nothing planned until the finish line party this evening.

As we exited the pool and dried off, we were surprised and excited to see that Team All Play and No Work, some of our best friends from the Run and the team that we had first connected with months ago after signing up for this adventure, were checking in at the same hotel!

We hadn't seen Jillian, Victoria, and Lisa since the launch party in Negombo, and were so excited to catch up with them and swap stories of our adventures. We decided that we would convoy together to the finish line this evening.

We didn't have anything planned for the morning, so we decided to take a joyride around Tangalle.

Kim, who had been sick and missed the first few days on the road, hadn't had the chance to get behind the wheel yet, but her sons were really persistent on having her drive before returning our tuk-tuk to the Adventurists.

Kim drove us around Tangalle for a while.

Even though we got stuck in the mud one time, Kyle was able to push the tuk-tuk into neutral while Michael gunned the engine in reverse until it sputtered out of the brackish mud, and we were soon back on solid ground.

One of the reasons that we joined the Rickshaw Run in the first place is because it is to raise money for charity. During our adventure, we've collected 500 British Pounds for Cool Earth, a charity fighting climate change, and an additional 500 Pounds for the Save Elephant Foundation, which supports rescued elephants in Thailand. 

We sent the afternoon writing postcards to our major donors (if you donated to support our causes at the postcard tier, you can expect it to be arriving soon).

Since we hit the goal of raising at least 1,000 GBP for charity, Kyle and Michael left on launch day with purple hair, and they were determined to cross the finish line with purple hair as well.

It was time to drive to the finish line and hand in our keys. We had deliberately booked a hotel near the finish line at the Sumudu Seafood Restaurant, so we didn't have far to go. As we approached the beach along a bumpy dirt road, we joined up with several other teams who were cheering and honking as we came to the end of our journey.

As we drove into the huge field that would serve as our car park, Maddy, one of the organizers, handed each of us a can of frosty Lion Lager. We had made it, and it was time to celebrate!

We drove our trusty little tuk-tuk up to the finish line, snapped a few photos, turned in our insurance documents and key, and received our official Adventurist patch and certificate.

We had made it! We headed down to the beach for the finish line party.

Even though nearly every other tuk-tuk suffered numerous breakdowns on the journey (except for ours!), everyone made it to Tangalle more or less in one piece.

It was great seeing all of the other teams and hearing their stories and adventures from the road.

As the afternoon went on, a cricket game broke out on the beach, and we enjoyed watching its chaotic nature as the beer and punch continued to flow.

Punch originated in this part of the world, and the drink was actually introduced to the west by the British East India Company from the Indian subcontinent. In fact, the word "punch" is one of several common English words that actually has its roots from India due to decades of British rule (other words that you might be surprised to come from Indian roots include cash, bungalow, cushy, jungle, shampoo, and thug).

The word "punch" means "five" in Hindi, as the traditional Indian drink was made with five ingredients: alcohol (usually arrack), sugar, lemon juice, water, and spices.

The presumably went on until late in the evening, but we didn't stay too long. Our time on the road is at an end... but our adventure in Sri Lanka is not, and tomorrow is going to be another very early morning!

We still have more to come (including a big announcement!), so stay tuned as Team Mama's Boys makes our way back north across the country towards Colombo!

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