Galle Fort, Sri Lanka
The words required to describe Galle are eluding me. Ironic, given that my sole purpose of being there was attend a literary festival in the midst of the creative writing class that occupies my time these three short weeks.
I dearly wished I could have seen more of the tiny town that is nestled between old Dutch walls. During sessions sat inside the Maritime Museum I heard long respected authors and new hits alike recount their story. I met five authors and had four books signed, three of which had been assigned for class. Two of the writers particularly inspired me: New Yorker contributor Katherine Boo, with her fascinating factual insight into a Mumbai slum that read like fiction; and Sri-Lankan American Nayomi Munaweera whose reimagined recount of the Sri Lankan civil war I devoured in under two hours during the plane ride there. And I wrote one short story. The above experience rather precluded regular sightseeing, but we managed to gain a taste for this small Southern town.
The festival itself was fantastic. I have only attended Cheltenham Literature Festival before, given that it's in my hometown and attracts a wealth of talent; I have fond memories of fangirling both Caitlin Moran and Jacqueline Wilson on separate occasions. In many ways this event was the same, substitute an cold town hall for a more temperate tent surrounded by tuk-tuks and the essence remained. Eager audiences desperate to hear from their beloved authors, interspersed with the wandering of discovers looking for their next read.
As for Galle, I'll let the photos do the talking. Aren't they worth 1000 words, after all?