So today, my schedule was such: woke early, checked email and the news, updated Facebook, the morning class was canceled due to bus strikes, had breakfast, had a rest, had lunch, went out for arrack and spices (the last gifts on my list), stopped by St. Anthony’s Church on the way back, prepared gifts for the Brothers with Liz, went to the lawyers English class, changed into saris, met two of the lawyers and Brother Augustine for a ride and then dinner at Flag and Whistle, a restaurant with a fantastic view of the Colombo harbor, had small snacks of French fries and different meats and dinner of chicken fried rice and this other gorgeous rice with an over easy egg on top, was dropped off at the Provincialate with many goodbyes, received a gift from the Brother Visitor (Brother Denzil) from our trip earlier in the day when he asked us what we would like, came upstairs, took off the sari that was preventing me from breathing fully, did the last bit of packing and then wrote this list.
In the meantime, we learned about reconciliation, heard the lawyers challenge me to not compare Sri Lanka and the States (the guns at the recent concert in Mannar and how unused to seeing this I was), the dividing tactics of politicians in the 70s that placed Sinhala as the official language of the country and divided it because of this, the loss of communication and story that came from this, the need for history books to tell multiple stories and for us to consider how to teach loveliness towards one another when there have been so many losses on both sides. I will still be considering these ideas for a long while. I really appreciated, though, when one of the lawyers said that both sides are wrong and that should be understood but that there needed to be reconciliation and plans for the future.
In 20 minutes, I will be on my way to the airport, leaving Sri Lanka. We will stop in Bangkok, then Hong Kong, then San Francisco. I checked on our flight status later today. I am not ready to go home, but it is time. I need to process all that I have learned and think about the implications in my work and how I can continue to support the work of the Lasallian Family in Sri Lanka.