The Heat Is Very Hot
Nodath (ND) and Sududath (SD) had arrived at their usual Water Hole for their monthly discussion on local foreign affairs at noon despite the sweltering August heat. Both were alumni of the Forward School for Backward Boys and MBAs of Oxford Branch of Urugasmangwewa College of Instant English.
Nodath, strong supporter of the government unbuttoning the top buttons of his shirt: Sooh! Sooh! The heat is very hot no? Can’t blame the government if the monsoons don’t come, no?
Sududath, virulent critic of the government: Heat is very hot? What for the telling not laughing is also coming but perspiration is pouring like sweat. Like a waterfall. My clothes are soaked.
Adde machang don’t eggssagerate simply because you bu….gers are in the Opposition and elections are coming. ‘Pattapal Boru’ as our leader is saying. Waterfall! My bloody foot, said ND
You too admitted the heat is very hot no? What is this? Sex Wave followed by a Crime Wave and now a Heat Wave. Read the papers. The Sex Wave and Crime Wave have been caused by the Heat Wave. Even ordinary, normal people are affected by the heat. Is this what the people elected your president and government for?
ND: Don’t be stupid. Never mind all that. The last time I ordered the drinks. This is your turn.
SD: Kollo, kollo, waiter. Bring a bottle of old stuff, iced soda and plenty of ice.
Waiter: No ice, Sir. No power. Pridge won’t work
ND: Then bring the iced soda and ask the manager to work the generator. Then ‘Karkonawa’, the pan.
Waiter: Soda not iced Sir. No power. Manager says don’t work the generator because we got ‘kunu’ diesel and if we put in that diesel the generator will be Kota Uda.
SD: Addey, ND. Always breakdown like Norochcholai and your government, as Ranil says. Papers said Norochcholai was working last week. But what has happened this week? A hell of a karachchelai, No? Has a Chinese swallowed a vital part of the coal powered generator thinking it was a blue sapphire?
ND: You bu..gers are laughing now but when the election results come the foot will be in the other boot or the foot will be in the other foot, never mind which is right. We can ask our old English master which is right. But SD you must be careful about laughing at our leaders. I tell you, you are moving in front of a jumping train.
SD: Never mind, cool down. You fellows are going to sweep the elections in all three provinces, I assure you that.
ND: What is your evidence. Don’t come up with your hackneyed accusations of computer jill marts and manape tricks.
Look machang, we are on opposite sides but still good old friends, no?
The elections will, as one newspaper said, be like Usain Bolt running the 100 meters without any competitors, SD explained.
ND: What about Ranil, Karu J and the not so young now Premadasa. They are all campaigning very strongly.
SD: In cricketing terms Ranil is LBW – Leg Broken on Wicket. Premadasa is batting at the other end and appealing against his own Captain Ranil even on no balls and when Ranil calls him for a run, Preme runs half way through and bolts back to make his captain run out. Ranil the experienced captain is surviving but he can’t make a winning score. Preme doesn’t want to score, he only wants Ranil out. Karu J the one down bat is technically perfect but he follows the one-two-bthattu-thattu tradition. When the scoring rate required is 36 runs per over Karu scores one run per ball and is perfectly satisfied. This team is practising for Paralympics contest in cricket next time. Shoo, shoo it is hotte hot now, says ND and suggests decamping to a Colombo 7 Waterhole – there are no power cuts in Colombo 7 because it is a high security area. Get a job in high security and you will be ‘wellavaya’ in everything, he says. But the two bottle scarred veterans scuttle their plan. Closing time is approaching an even though ND knows the manager in the C-7 joint the fellow won’t budge and serve drinks because Carlo’s Rotweilers will be sniffing around to see if closing time deadlines are being violated.
ND, now holding the post of a ‘Patta Pal Boru’ disseminating general says he will retire to his A/C office for his afternoon nap and SD says he will be heading to his flat in Kotte. Go home and take a shower to recover from this heat, ND advises his friend.
Shower? How to shower when the water pump doesn’t work and the overhead tanks of the flats are dry? he asks. SD says that when his bus is passing the Diyawanna Lake he will get off, strip himself and jump into the cooling lake.
But how? Does he have his swimming trunks?
No his ‘lunket’ will do, assures SD confidently.
You may be charged for indecent exposure, security violations and breach of parliamentary privilege, warns his friend.
Not to worry. I will quote some lines from that Middle Ages poet Geoffrey Saucer or Chaucer – I forget the name – but it goes like this: ‘Time and Tide Waits for No Man’. I will add ‘Nor will a Man ‘hotte hot’ in the August heat wait for power to come back’.