Monday, October 4, 2010


Menik Vehera, Polonnaruwa
Photography-Anu Weerasuriya

Considered to be one of the earliest shrines in Polonnaruwa, it is believed to have been built by King Vijayabahu. Differing slightly in shape from the other chaityas, the brick built dagaba rests on a stone platform. The relic chamber in the centre, which is normally placed underground, lies with its niches and reliquary stone open to the sky. It is also unique in that the outerwall of the monument is decorated with terra cotta tiles carved with lions. Close to the dagoba is an Image House with stone Buddha statues.

Wild Passion Fruit, Passiflora foetida

(S) Del-batu Wel, Pada gedi. (T) Thaatu poodu kodi.

Photography-Anu Weerasuriya

Having its origins in South America, according to Exotic Medicinal Plants in Sri Lanka & their Uses by Ranil Senanayake (2010) an infusion made with the flowers, buds and leaves is a cure for sleeplessness and stress. When whooping cough is associated with convulsions, it is known to give relief, and it also used as a remedy for pain, particularly of the neuralgic type.

This creeper was photographed in Pidurangala. The flower is similar to that of the Passion Fruit that is made into the most delicious juice that we love to drink. The leaf and the fruit, however, are different. The leaf is shaped differently and is lighter in colour. The fruit is also lemony green like the leaf and has whiskery tendrils that curl around it. The villagers seem to have named it after the sound it makes when it is squeezed.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Chris,

    There is no way I can thank you for sending me these excellent emails. I enjoy the pictures and also the excellent prose of the writers of days gone by. The only thing I can give you in return is a three-part narrative of mine which you probably read in the Sunday Times this month. I hope you enjoy them.


    "Budu Saranai". May all Beings be happy

    Somasiri Devendra