A blazing wave of heat has surged over Colombo.
In the bus, the man in front of me takes off his cap, produces a large checked napkin from his pocket and proceeds to wipe the damp on the back of his neck with slow, deliberate strokes. The third beggar to board the bus in 10 minutes, waves a stump for an arm in my face and has me scrambling for my purse.
The couple in the corner exchange vows of undying love over a packet of manioc chips. He feeds her. She blushes and giggles coyly behind her handkerchief. The kid in front is fast asleep, sprawled across her mother’s lap – face shining with perspiration. Her brother on the other side of the aisle, sits with his shoulders slumped forward, the occasional polyphonic tune pealing from the phone clutched in his hands.
Gray faces and clothes covered in dust all around. I huddle in my seat, suddenly feeling exceedingly conspicuous in my too-loud mustard top.
People with forced smiles on garish posters flash past in a technicolor blur – all of them telling me that I should vote for them. For the betterment of our country, of course.
It’s too damn hot.