16 March 2006

A drive through Colombo

Hearing: Crew chatting away

Good Morning all,

Its 6.50am here in CMB and I'm in the crew bus on my way back to the airport heading home, outside the sky is a light grey and its cloudy. Since its one of the more difficult layovers due to the early timing and short layover time, some crew have opted to sleep in their seat for the duration of the ride back to the A/P...wish I could catch some zzz's too since I've only had bout 4-5hrs of sleep but the amount of coffee I've had is working against me.

For those who don't know, CMB has a very hot/humid tropical like climate and therefore is perfect for lush green vegetation to thrive, as you drive along you can catch glimpses of green fields and coming from the sandpit its a nice change in scenery.

Since its early morning here and a weekday, like anywhere else in the world people are awake and out heading for work, to find work or to find a way to survive and there are kids in white uniforms heading off to school. Overhead electricity cables criss cross from one side of the road to the other as does the traffic underneath, a chaos of tuk-tuks, buses, motorcycles, trucks cars and bicycles.

As we drive through the streets I can see modern stone shopfronts side by side with rundown 3 walled, tin roofed and garage door fronted shops next to an open lot with rusted shipping containers - a small shrine - a flash HSBC bank - a small alleyway leading to someone's home - pizza hut - Toyota car yard - construction works - clothes shops - broken down abandoned homes - fenced in nice homes surrounded by greenery and 2 cars in the driveway - a row of wooden 2x2 stores - a small hut hidden among foliage in a field of green and surrounded by tall lanky palms - a man in a sarong standing at the 2nd floor window of his home (still being built) looking out at the bustle of the morning and sipping from his mug.

The people that my airline flies in and out of Sri Lanka tend to be working class, are very sweet in nature and have a dignity about them despite their humble situations...I have seen more beggars in Brussels than here. On board they take whatever you give them and the only thing they demand are drinks which they ask for tentively and are very happy when they get it. When they leave they say thankyou and goodbye to every crew they see with a genuine smile. On the way here I accidentally missed saying my adieus to one lady who came closer to me and waved so I would notice her and say goodbye to her too...I have to say that really made my smile grow wider. They really are a heartwarming people.


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