Al Juhara writes…
…unfortunately for you, gentle readers, quite compulsively. Be it dairies, letters, emails or heck, even the odd “To Do” list, I find an entire waffle of literary produce emerges when I lay pen to paper. Or finger to keyboard.
I remember when I was eleven and the subject at school was “My Ambition” I waxed eloquent about wanting to be a writer. How I filled a three-page essay with that basic decision is currently a mystery to me, but it must have worked as I know I consistently got marks like 99 for English. What being a writer actually entailed I had not bothered about and still do not and the dream continued as you can see from a page out of my 2004 dairy.
Have decided I must write a book to surpass “God of Small Things,” ”Harry Potter,” and “Lord of the Rings,” combined, which will shoot me to Instant Fame and Riches, so that I can buy a house, but have not decided what exactly to write, or if its actually easier to instead dictate into borrowed micro cassette, as handwriting in busses not really that legible.
But stuck for ideas.
Also not sure if grammar and syntax correct.
(Mosquitoes munching me under table – vague visions of dying tragically at young tender age of thirty three, like desert rose, five minutes off to light the ARS coil)
One thing for sure:
I need to get richer! Quicker!
Because if I go on at this pace with the librarian job in the NGO , I will need estimated four hundred and seventeen years of desperate savings and scrimping to buy myself the house of my dreams.
Which brings us to issue of “what is wrong with house already inherited”(for more details see page ….)
Am late for work today and will have to sit through long bus trip and not looking forward to it. Although admittedly gives me a lot of time to think of subject for Blockbuster Novel. Also ends up in me day dreaming and falling asleep on way to work ,and subsequently imagining derisive public speculation on what had been doing last night…
Have you noticed the amazing color in a Ceylon bus?
They are really story book vehicles
adorned with rows of Hindu Gods
Windows are stuck
Water gutters inside alongside windows (occasional drips of puke here)
Not enough leg room for a tall woman
We burn them when we get really fed up with them.(Colombo traffic ,pg…)
Give you a long time in which to think about life and being poor in a third world mega city.
Occasionally therapeutic as in when I have had a major row with 927862.
and get into a bus and go off without my mobile phone, to make him worry. I did that one poya day , went off to discover myself and having reached Dematagoda, returned all in about forty five minutes. Brother dearest admitted that was quick. He had known people who took five years off in Tibet to find them selves and still couldn’t..
Have a knack for stalling alongside garbage dumps.(For Colombo Garbage see page ….)
Every morning I pass a hardware store which is opening up for the day .There are ceramic squatting pans hung one atop the other , and colorful plastic mops, aluminum buckets and sinks and this wonderful old Turk in a white fez , who very patiently with a bucket and a small plastic cup ,cleans the ground in front of the shop. Smiling at him is pointless as he concentrates on this floor cleaning as though his hope for Moksha depends on this , and limited by the size of his plastic tea cup I am sure the process takes up at least forty five minutes each morning. A kind of Japanese Tea Ceremony in an aluminium ware background…
Checked again to see if phone has lost its charge: 927862 said he would call…
Looked over the flyway into the railroads below in Maradana and regretted it :
Then there is the Pola, in Dematagoda.
In the morning it is not the smell for sore throats. In other words, the cloying early morning stink of garbage is something alive and pulsating, kerchiefs and helmets are flimsy arsenal against this determined blanket of bio degradation. Year after year it continues to mark Dematagoda like a large in-your-nose landmark to your sense of olfactory direction.
Decided that I am looking quite hip in bus taking notes like some kind of casual social scientist . Peeps are staring at me rather curiously-
However, regretfully, sometimes that dreaded monster called Writers Block stands in your way and you go days months or even years without being able to create anything remotely presentable. Perhaps this is one of those phases. Or maybe its just that I’m cooking up a surprise…