Tuesday, November 4
Lighthouse Beach, 16:30
Uday has a new car and on Sunday, and the puja, he offered to drive us to Trivandrum today. He arrived at 10:00, and we set off to the Thanal headquarters. I spent an hour interviewing Shibu Nair about the Bag Tree project, its purposes and its wider implications. By the time we left I had a much clearer idea of how Pixelache (and possibly Arcada) might work with him on this.
Afterwards we drove to the Organic Bazaar that the project runs. To our surprise, and his, one of Uday’s neighbours works there.
On the way out of Trivandrum we passed the hospital where Auo died and Irma decided, on the spur of the moment, that she wanted to look inside. We stopped and she and I crossed the road and entered the hospital. It felt very strange. Ten minutes earlier I would have been unable to describe it in any detail. Once inside I knew exactly where I was and where to go. We walked past the office of Bobby Moses, the doctor in charge of Auo’s treatment and Irma wanted to see him. We went in and talked with him for five or ten minutes. It was a starnge meeting but I felt that all three of us felt comforted by it; by meeting again at some distance from what had first thrown us together and overwhelmed us all.
After that Uday drove us back to our house.
Babu is the local rickshaw driver that Molly found for us, and in the afternoon we called him again and he took us to Hawa beach. We used to walk this from Blue Breeze, but this house is about 2 kilometres from Kovalam Junction, and that is about 3 kilometres from the beach. Since rain is always imminent at this time of year, and we haven’t had a day without rain so far, we opt to ride instead.
We are walking along the beach and Leo is indeed closed and under repair. The inside of the roof has been removed and people are painting. Auo would find this interesting and so I take a photograph to remind me that this remains true.
We walk to Jeevans instead to meet Michael. We will end up having a meal there that will remind us why we always choose to go to Leo. At Jeevans the food is not bad, but it is also nothing special. They do have a legitimate alcohol licence, though, so beer is served in beer glasses rather than teacups, and the bottles can be left visible on the table, rather than wrapped in newspaper and hidden somewhere.
We will walk back to the end of Hawa beach and take a taxi home. Unlike Babu whose driving is somewhere between very cautious and not moving, this driver races over all the potholes at top speed. When we arrive, he turns and grins and says “Rickshaw like helicopter”.