This describes my last long journey with Jayantha, perhaps indeed the last. He was not in Kithsiri’s league at all, for the idea of staying overnight in Mutur frightened him so he left me and went back to Trincomalee. But once again I had a most instructive time in Mutur, this time seeing the simple homes of some of the AUC students.

Then I note my first visit to the delightful old house on the Peradeniya Road into which Jean Arasanayagam had moved, a great setting for her ebullient vagueness, captured in this picture. And I end with the publication of the book I had produced for A J Gunawardena, as a tribute to his former colleague Ranjith Gunawardena who was Oranee’s brother.

Another workshop in Mutur

I was at the UGC again next morning and in the afternoon Siron turned up, to talk about another workshop she had arranged in Mutur, which of course I could not refuse to run. Saturday was work at Nirmali’s and then on Sunday I went with Jayantha, my last trip with him I think, to Trincomalee where we had an Examination Board meeting at the AUC before going to Fr. Leo’s for the night.

Next morning after a Board of Study meeting I went to Mutur on the ferry with three AUC students who came from there. After lunch I went to the Education office and visited the GELT Centre but then Jayantha, who had come, said he was not too happy with the place and took the ferry back, to stay at the AUC. But then the students took me to their houses, which was a fascinating experience for a couple were simply thatched huts, where the boys had had to study by the light of oil lamps. Interestingly, their very smart friend who was at Colombo university came from a marginally more affluent home.

The teacher’s seminar took up much of the next day and then I was given a military escort to the ferry. Jayantha met me on the other side and took me to Fr. Leo’s where I had a swim before correcting proofs. Next day I worked on the Grammar Handbook and then went to the Trinco GELT after lunch and also then the Kinniya GELT, after which I returned to Fr. Leo’s.

Next morning I headed back, calling at the Matale and Peradeniya RESCs, with lunch at the Peradeniya Resthouse. Then I visited two Kandy GELT Centres and also the Poramadulla one, getting to the Hanguranketha Resthouse for the night. I saw the Centre Principal next morning and then went to see Jean Arasanayagam at the old family house on the Kandy Peradeniya Road into which she had moved, a wonderful old setting for her. Then there was a workshop at the Peradeniya RESC, after which I went back to see the Hingurakgoda and Polonnaruwa RESCs, spending that night at the Polonnaruwa Resthouse.

I was at Girandurukotte next day to take a class and check on exams and conduct some interviews, and then I went to Colombo, working next day on the Grammar book and much else at Nirmali’s and taking delivery of Studying Literature and Society.