When his sister approached me for a handout I waived her away, and she moved on. Her well combed and pleated hair meant that she was many steps away from true destitution. By the time the 10 - 11 year old brother approached however, targeting my ice cream with single - minded focus, I was unable to resist. "Uncle!" he yelled, looking not at me but at the ice cream that I had just bought from Naturals on Marine Drive, and grabbing it from my hands.
In all honesty I felt I deserved that ice cream after returning from Lower Parel late at night. Lower Parel, which I at best survive on early morning trips in or out later in the evening is not where I wanted to be at night after a long day.
Morning run at 6.30 a.m.
My first conference call ever with someone in Dakar.
A day later, earlier in the evening than yesterday’s ice cream episode, and I’m grabbing a solitary beer at Cafe Leopold. The staff greet me with exuberant handshakes. I’m not quite Shantaram, but recognized in a Mumbai watering hole , a dubious distinction at this phase of life.
November is unseasonably hot and running is tough.
The man child and his party are convinced that the Prime Minister is headed to jail for the Rafael jet deal, India’s purchase of French fighter jets. “He won’t last a day”, the man child says, presumably referring to the interrogation as opposed to actual time in jail. The Government is battling back with bullet trains, statues, metros and coastal roads.
Bill Gates says that we’re lifting people out of poverty in record numbers and that the world is getting fundamentally better. He’s probably right and in a better postition to know than most of us. Someone just needs to tell that kid who took my ice cream.
Btw, the banner photo was taken from our holiday home outside of San Gimignano at 6.20 am. What light! It lasted all of five minutes.