20 March 2013

Desperately Sri Lankan

The sun has been beating down mercilessly for weeks now. The day almost unbearable if outside. Humid and hot even at night. The only respite at early dawn when it gets cold enough to sleepily search the bed with your foot for a thrown away t-shirt, the crisp white cotton sheet common to many homes in the tropics. Especially if you live in a concrete jungle. Colombo, Mumbai, Karachi, Sao Paolo, Mexico City, all the same.
Suddenly the hot afternoon sun’s covered by clouds, a cool wind sweeps across, and the concrete jungle can almost be heard sighing when the first drops of rain hits the hot concrete surfaces.
Schools out and the children run on to their leafy lanes to enjoy the rain. Paper boats are built for racing, mothers screaming for raincoats forgotten.
The old domestic serves the world with a rare bare toothed smile and takes a break in her hot kitchen. Now cooled by the rain beating down heavily overhead. She sits on her haunches with a fresh cup of tea and a generous serving of sugar balanced on her palm.
The government clerk at the ministry by the water sighs in relief. The yellow sweat showing through his white starched shirt now drying to a brown. He pours himself a large glass of water from the water cooler and at the same time gives his heat rash in his crotch a good scratch.
It’s a Tuesday, the women who had braved the sun all morning at the temple of the goddess Kali, look up at the heavens thanking their goddess for the relief. Mingled with their relief that the morning prayers and offering to the goddess has much pleased her.
The rain has come.
With it my tears.
I am so far away.
It’s better never to have loved, for then you know not and miss not the love you did not know. 

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