HALGOLLA PLANTATION HOME – the unique sri lankan experience – December 2019
Spot the garden lizard (katussa) !
The picture on the left is of a plant that is part of a selection that oral history at HPH says was but one exotic foliage plant previously found all over the “home plantation of Antoine Joseph van der Poorten and reputed to have been brought back by him from his trips to what was then the Congo Free State, where he served that most reprehensible of monarchs, Leopold II of Belgium, as manager of that king’s plantations in Central Africa and from the far east, Java, where he settled his eldest son, Francis, at age 21, never to
For December, as in past months,
we’ll continue our
“Surprise Basket of HPH goodies,”
which appears to delight our guests
as they take their leave of us!
Acknowledgements of HPH’s
■ Certificate of Excellence from
■ Rated as Best Home Stay in Sri
■ Recommended by Bradt Travel
Guide for Sri Lanka
return to Sri Lanka. This is part of what the van der Poorten currently domiciled at HPH has inherited, part of the “good, the bad and the ugly”! From a situation of incessant rain, we have moved to what used to be called “afternoon heat thundershowers” and since they too provide precipitation we will live by our promise never to complain about rain in any form! The wild pigs and porcupines continue to present a challenge to our efforts to grow anything in the ground. The monkeys have become an even bigger menace thanks to the land neighbouring ours being further denuded of what fruit
Alagalla, to the
south of HPH
bearing trees it carried.“Justice” and “fairness” seem to be words singularly lacking relevance to our neck of the woods in the natural order of things! We take shots at the simians with our puny little air gun and light firecrackers which keep them at bay for a little while! Another strategy has been someone wearing a devil-dancer’s face mask and hooting and hollering at them. Suffice it to say that this strategy only works for a limited time! Oh, well, old
problems call for new solutions and “Short” Selvarajah has come up with some “monkeycontrol” measures that we’ll report on if they show any signs of success! The second, even smaller, part of our vanilla crop awaits harvesting by the representative of the processing group which supplies the essence to the primary bottler of pop in Sri Lanka.
Van loaded with coconuts at
Our meager work force has also begun harvesting our coffee crop – Robusta, Arabica & Liberica. Sri Lanka has gone through yet another political convulsion but, given the resilience its people have developed over the years, things will soon be back on an even keel. In any event, these goings-on impact primarily on the permanent residents and visitors/tourists wouldn’t notice any change! Such is Sri Lanka! Our workforce, such as it is, has certainly gone “beyond the call of duty” in keeping HPH on an even keel during often trying times. For that we are so grateful, particularly during a time when such conduct seems increasingly rare in the world at large.
Coconuts being unloaded by
A comrade in arms, Ranjit Hulugalle has taken wing to shores far away it seems. As someone who shared the same beliefs in the matter of defending our diminishing natural resources, we will miss him sorely and can but hope we’ll see him back before too long. PLEASE let us know what you’d like to see in our monthly newsletter. And don’t hesitate to let us know if it bores you to tears, either!
Arlene & Emil
Mob. +94 76 975 2176, +94 77 347 0702