Sunday Serenade: Musings From Sri Lanka

Today we are all in for such a treat as the lovely and immensely kind, Mystica from Musings From Sri Lanka, has joined us for the Sunday Serenade.

the bungalow of our tea property at ginigathhena.

the bungalow of our tea property at ginigathhena.

What do you do when you’re not blogging or reading?

I work full time in two different kinds of work. My husband and I run a tea exporting company, exporting both normal black tea as well as herbal teas to various countries. I tend to handle more outside work as my husband is right now immobile after having had
a problem with his feet. It is a small company with around 15 employees so it is easy to handle work.

I have bigger responsibilities as an agriculturalist. We own a few properties which include tea, cinnamon, large scale papaya and mango cultivation, as well as a smaller tangerine plantation and a very nice pineapple plantation.. We also have a bit of rubber! The properties are spread over Sri Lanka in  different locations and I invariably try to visit all every week. This is the part which takes me away from home.

About five years ago traveling was very tough in Sri Lanka. The road conditions were atrocious and security was huge problem. With the end
of the civil war and the rebuilding of roads, life has been made much easier but time spent traveling takes huge chunks out of my day. What for
most Westerners would be a one hour journey would be for me 3 hours!

You lead such a fascinating life!  And to have all those properties and responsibilities ~ you are truly special!  With everything you have to do, how do you carve out time for blogging, reading, family and life?

cin 2

cinnamon peeling at elpitiya

I am blessed that I can read whilst traveling. I do not drive so whilst being driven I can read. Lots of people tell me they feel nauseous if they even try to read but I am lucky like that. I always have a book with me – always and even a five minute break waiting for someone is used to read.

I have three children and they all live in Melbourne, Australia.When the civil war was on in Sri Lanka, we felt it was very unsafe for them here so we sent them there for studies. Two of them have finished their studies and are working now in Melbourne and the third is in his final semester there. Melbourne is now home for them.

My husband and I live alone. My mum lives a couple of miles away from me and unfortunately we do not have the extensive family network that is very normal for Sri Lankan families. I miss that.

I, however. help to run two orphanages. One is for 35 girls and the other for 25 girls. One is run very close to Colombo itself and I visit once a week. The other is in our former war zone and unfortunately I can only visit once in about three or four months.

 the children from the orphanage I run at Negombo. this is their Western music band.

the children from the orphanage I run at Negombo. this is their Western music band.

I am with you Mystica ~ I love reading while traveling and generally find a way to be the passenger just for that very reason.  It is so far out of my reasoning to imagine living in a war-torn area ~ we are spoiled in the US in that we have not had battle on our land in almost 200 years.  To not only manage all that you do AND help with the orphanages AND run a successful blog AND live in an area recovering from war – you make it seem so easy and effortless.  I imagine it is not and you are a credit to your home and community.  So share with us your favorite place to read and why you love it so much. 

I like to read in any place that is peaceful and quiet.  That includes all our agricultural properties which are havens of quiet. Even our home is very quiet.

Peace and quiet is a prerequisite for my reading time too.  Just looking at the pictures and the sunlight, it looks as though you probably have very beautiful and fragrant areas in which to find solace in reading.  Now, if you could speed-date any author, who would it be and what would you ask?

Sarah Dunant would definitely by my topmost choice. I thought her books set in Renaissance Italy were glorious. Diana Gabaldon, to have the imagination to go where she does. I will definitely want to know how she gets her inspiration.

I’ve only read the first in Gabaldon’s Outlander series but found her to be incredibly gifted!  If your life could be summed up in a book or a movie title, what would it be?

I dont know about my life being summed up by a book but I would have liked to have had the mind of P D James or Elizabeth George who can make something so intricate and at the same time so very logical. I would love to be someone who could logically take things one step at a time and work out a pattern to the end.
Green Chillies. Very hot and very spicy and very popular.

Green Chillies. Very hot and very spicy and very popular.

Mystica, thank you so much for joining us today.  I loved learning more about a fellow blogger and friend; and have such an immense respect for you.  Thank you for sharing the pictures and giving us a glimpse into your life.  What a remarkable woman and blogger you are!

Happy Sunday!

~Stacy

 

 

  • http://bermudaonion.net bermudaonion(Kathy)

    Wow, Mystica sounds like a wonder woman! I’m tired thinking of all she does. She should write a memoir!

  • http://gravatar.com/niseutb Nise’ (Under the Boardwalk)

    I loved learning more about you Mystica! It must have been hard to have your kids in another Country! Your business reminds me of the book, The Tea Rose, have you read it?

  • http://talesofwhimsy.wordpress.com talesofwhimsy

    Wonderful fascinating interview.
    Sadly I’m one of those that gets nausea if I read while in a car. But that’s why I love my audios.

  • http://www.lifewithbooks.com Jenners

    I wish I could read in a car!! I’m not one of the lucky ones.
    And this was a fascinating and interesting view into a way of life that is very different from mine. I feel like I haven’t accomplished much in life now. And thanks for including photos — it was neat to see.

  • http://www.chesscomicsandcrosswords.blogspot.in Prashant C. Trikannad

    Stacy, thanks very much for this inspiring and positive interview with Mystica. She manages to read and review some very fine books every week in spite of her hectic schedule. The picture of the bungalow reminded me of my own cottage in our native town.

  • http://bookfanmary.wordpress.com Mary

    The fact that Mystica has time to read inspires me! I’ve enjoyed her blog for a long time and have even greater admiration after learning more about her.

  • http://2kidsandtiredbooks.blogspot.com Holly (2 Kids and Tired)

    I love this feature Stacy. It’s so neat to learn about our fellow book bloggers. I’m in awe at what Mystica does. Wonderful interview!

  • http://bookjourney.wordpress.com/ Sheila (Book Journey)

    This was such a great post! I loved learning more about Mystica – her pictures she posts always fascinate me and I had no idea all she does! Mystica you truly amaze me and I love your heart for people!

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