The Village supermarket
Sri Lanka is known by many names through history - Serendib, Taprobane, Selon, Ceylan, Zeilan, Ceilan and Seylon . all these names reflects a rich history that begins 500 years before Christ. Sri Lanka's rich, fertile land has made the country an agricultural one, with many different types of fruit, vegetables, grain and spices grown and sold here.
The agrarian people of old Sri Lanka lived a simple and bountiful life, they would gather their produce every week and meet at the local fair where commerce and exchange happened - here they would barter, buy provisions, and exchange ideas and conversation. This 'Weekly Fair' has stood the test of time and is still popular in almost every town and village. The fair begins at 4 a.m. on Sundays, with traders setting up stalls along the roadside and inside the fairgrounds - they display their produce in tents, tables and the back of their trucks; Here you can expect to see colour, vibrance and a range of produce that may boggle the mind.
Here are a few colorful characters you will see in the village pola
Pol welenda - Coconut seller
One of Sri lanka's most diverse produce, coconut trees can be found growing along the coastline as well as in the hills; it is a most diverse fruit - the milk from the kernel is used in cooking, the husk is twisted in rope and woven in to rugs and the shell is used to create art and utensils and even the spent coconut powder (The kernel is scraped and squeezed for milk) is spread on the floor and used to collect dust and dirt.
Thambili welenda - King Coconut seller
The orange version pol carries in it sweet water that contain a large reservoir of electrolytes and minerals and it`s flesh is soft, sweet and nutritious; Tambili is said to have been used as an IV drip during ancient times all the way to world war 2, and it is still used in traditional ayurvedic medicine. What is most fascinating about this miraculous nut is that it is only found in the miraculous isle of Sri Lanka.
Karavala welenda - Dried Fish seller
Walking around the fair you nose is bound to be tripped by the smells of the local Karavala vendor. The strong pungent smell, dashed with the smell of sea salt is not inviting until it is cooked or fried up with onions and served up with a steaming plate of rice.
The Sri Lankan Fish Monger
Surrounded by the Indian ocean and many good fishing waters it should come as no surprise that you should come across several fish mongers selling their wares in roadside cubicles. here our friend is using a few boxes as his make shift stand .
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