The second edition of the Rotaract Road Trips organized by the club service team of the Rotaract District 3220 redefining the friendship with the Rotaractors in the Nothern Zone. More than 60 Rotaractors gathered in front of the Racecourse on 12th September 2019. Two luxury buses were arranged for the journey. Rotaractors from the Kandy Zone also joined us on our way to Jaffna.
The bus ride was a sleepless one for most of us because of the singing and dancing by our fellow Rotaractors. We arrived in Jaffna after a 10–hour long journey and checked in to the two hotels after having breakfast. Then all the Rotaractors got together to visit the first destination of the tour. “Nagadeepaya” is a small island situated in the Indian Ocean and well known for the temple where Lord Buddha visited the site to resolve the dispute between two warring Naga kings, Chulodara and Mahodara. After 15 minutes of a thrilling boat ride, we reached Nagadeepaya. After sightseeing Nagadeepa Viharaya and Nagapooshani Amman Temple we had an ice cream treat from one of our own presidents on the way back. The return journey back to Jaffna was another amazing experience for the Rotaractors who were able to get the front seats of the “Mani Nagadeepa” luxury boat.
Since everyone was full and not interested in lunch, we skipped the first-day lunch and went to Casurina Beach, one of the famous beaches in Jaffna. On the way to Casurina beach, we received refreshments from the Navy camp thanks to Rtr. Thanuja. Then we participated in the beach cleanup project “Together We Save” organized by the RAC Colombo Midtown, RAC Colombo West, RAC FMF UoC, RAC American National College, RAC Chullipuram, RAC Chunnakkam, RAC Kandy, RAC Nallur Heritage, and RAC IIT. After attending this worthy cause, we jumped into the sea around 6 pm after officially closing the Casurina beach event. We returned to hotels after having dinner at Jaffna town. Day one ended with an unplanned Baila night by the fellow Rotaractors.
The second day of the Jaffna tour started around 8 in the morning and we had our breakfast at Ammachchi; a food stall similar to Hela Bojun in Down south. We Rotaractors were able to taste authentic Jaffna food for a reasonable price and no one wanted to leave that place soon. Therefore, we were late to the District Council Meeting as well. After having breakfast, we came to YMCA hall for the DCM for the month of September hosted by the Nothern Zonal Rotaract clubs.
After the DCM we visited Jaffna Fort. After spending around one hour at Jaffna Fort we planned to visit the Nallur Kovil. But unfortunately, it was closed so we were able to see it just from the outside. Most of the Rotaractors were disappointed because they missed the chance to go inside the Kovil. But then, we went for the most interesting activity which was to taste some ice cream at Rio. If you are visiting Jaffna, you should not miss tasting ice cream from this amazing place. After having lunch, we came back to the hotels and got ready to go to Kankasanthurei (KKS).
All the Rotaractors had an amazing time at KKS beach. Girls got a special swimming training from Rtr. Rivi from the University of Kelaniya while some other Rotaractors specially Rtr. Keeth from ACBT had water swings from the bunch of Rotaractors. After enjoying the sea bath, we left KKS beach and gathered at the Gajas restaurant for dinner. The second day of the RRT 2.0 ended with late-night song sessions and friendly card games.
The third and final day of the day was full of installation ceremonies of the Rotaract clubs in the northern zone. After having breakfast, we directly went to Krishna Mahal, Chankanai for the joint installation ceremony of RAC Jaffna Peninsula, RAC Nallur Heritage and RAC Chullipuram. These installations were special to most of us because Rotaractors were able to do their felicitations in Tamil for the first time in their lives. Even DRR Rtr. PP. Balaji got the opportunity to deliver a speech in Tamil for the first time during this installation ceremony. So, it was a memorable one for most of us.
After having lunch at Krishna Mahal, Chankanai we relaxed for a few hours, roaming around the area until the second joint installation started. Finally, we participated in the joint installation ceremony of RAC Jaffna and RAC Jaffna Midtown. At the end of this installation, an unexpected birthday celebration has been organized by the club service team for the Rotaractors celebrating their birthdays on the month of September. After clicking a group photograph, we left Jaffna around 5.30 in the evening saying goodbye to our Nothern friends.
The bus ride was a sleepless one for most of the Rotaractors because of the paparazzi who were eagerly waiting to capture photos of the fellow Rotaractors sleeping; specially Rtr. Faiz from J’pura. Due to these paparazzi, entire WhatsApp groups were full of sleeping beauties and unfortunately, no one was able to hide their faces from these photographers. We came back to Colombo after another 10-hour journey on the early morning of 16th September, cherishing three days full of fun, friendship, and memories. Rotaract Road Trips gave us the opportunity to expand our Rotaract friendship while gaining so many new memories and fun times with fellow Rotaractors. Waiting for the next episode of Rotaract Road Trips – the visit to the hill country at the beginning of October.
By: Rtr. Hasitha Prashan