Sunday, January 25, 2009

Here I Am

Just to make DD and Darwin a bit jealous really. Here I am, back in the island of many different names.

The flight was good, I had two seats to myself, always a bonus.

The drive into Colombo from the airport was full of totally expected surprises. Sunday afternoon meant that the roads were quiet but still life carried on.

We drove past the minibus carrying the pilot and crew of my plane and they had met with an accident. There's something so Sri Lankan about that, even though it could have happened to any crew in any country.

I sat quietly and watched Sri Lankan unfold before me. The men sitting outside their smallholdings watching the world go by, the fellows on bikes in the road. I saw one chap on a bike narrowly avoid a collision with a bus, the avoiding would have been much easier but the cyclist was somehow carrying another bike across the handlebars of the one he was riding, so braking was a bit awkward for him. In fact cycling was a bit of a tough task.

I was the only person remotely interested in the goings on as he went through a St Vitus dance of a stopping manoeuvre to try to prevent getting obliterated by the bus.

I gazed at the slum dwellings as we crossed the river into Colombo and recalled how all of this looked to me when I was ten and saw things for the first time "proper" on the same journey. Then I looked at it with eyes as big as basket balls, these days the eyes are only slightly smaller. The wonder is a different kind, the familiarity means that I look a little deeper and uncover that bit more.

Is it just me or are the people a little bit less gentle each time I come? Is the spirit slowly being worn away?

Tomorrow I'll hit the usual haunts and do some mooching about. As I type this I can hear that backdrop of noise that almost warms my heart, the mixture of diesel engine rumble and horning.

It's a totally mad place.

I love it.

12 comments:

Dominic Sansoni said...

Welcome Back!

kalusudda said...

Enjoy the sands, sun and the food! (watch out for those red color chilies!)

Lady divine said...

hey! so you're here..:)
Have a great time RD...:)enjoy..:)

tash said...

welcome home.. :)
hope you enjoy it!

JP said...

Now I am green.Have a great time ...As I remember you mentioning sometime back, any plans for a short stay at Hilltop as well?

Rhythmic Diaspora said...

Thank you for the welcomes. No plans for Kandy JP, but will be heading to Galle for a few days

ViceUnVersa said...

Bit jealous - hmph... Green with envy RD! :)~

Logged in this morning believing might not see a post from you. V. pleased to see you live and kicking!

Enjoy Paradise, the weather and have one of those lovely long ice teas at the Barefoot Cafe for me :)!

Jayawewa!

Indyana said...

God,so do I ! Missing SL !

Angel said...

Welcome back! Hope you have a great holiday... will keep an eye out for you @ ODEL :)

n said...

sigh...so jealous:S

Gypsy said...

Yay! You're here. Here's to surreptitiously shadowing the famous London, Lanka and Drums......

Haha. Kidding.

Have a great holiday. Here for long?

Anonymous said...

Of course the people may seem "a little less gentle", what, stay away for years on end and come back and this island that'll just be frozen in time? what, the people here aren't complex enough to change, to be desensitized to this shit they live in, to not have to care about people who just see it as an island in the sun?
FYI the beggars at majestic city are still around, you probably got there on their lunch brake.