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For Sri Lanka
- Today Sri Lanka keeps such evocative nicknames as The Teardrop of India, due to the overall shape of a map of Sri Lanka.
- Every full moon is a public holiday in Sri Lanka -AKA “Poya” and hard liquor consumption is fairly high then.
- The preferred drink of choice is arrack (most often distilled from coconut flower sap) which is high in alcohol content. The signature drink is a little different to the norm. It’s made by fermenting rice, coconuts, fruits and sugarcane.
- Sri Lanka = serendipity. Serendipity is not just the name of a New York bakery and a mediocre John Cusack movie. The word serendipity (“happy accident”) came from Serendib, an old name for Sri Lanka. It’s an expression for the-happy-go-lucky fatalism that governs life in Sri Lanka.
- Wedding dates are planned with astrologers. Parents have detailed horoscopes done for their children based on the time of their birth. Wedding dates and job changes are planned in close consultation with astrologers. Even the former president Mahinda Rajapaksa set an early election date on his astrologer’s advice.
- The Poruwa is a beautifully decorated wooden platform with an overhanging roof from silk umbrella.
- The bride’s mother gives the couple a special mix of milk, rice, and kavum, a deep-fried Sri Lankan pastry.
- A group of teenage girls related to the couple sing ‘Jayamangala Gatha,’ and the Shilpathipathi (the priest) breaks a coconut in half, blessing the union.
- At the end of the Poruwa ceremony the bride and groom light a bass oil lamp together, promising to keep their hearts burning for always.