Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Ramadan Sparkles

There seems to be glass everywhere, for the last few days there have been small swathes of it on the roads: little sparklings at every U-turn and intersection. I’ve never seen so much glass.

And now, as I get to the head of the tailback on the Awir Road, there’s more glass than usual. It’s scattered across the road, a dragon’s treasure trove of scintillae glittering in the sunshine, a slight blue-green tinge to the little jewels, piled up like a Swarovski display cabinet. And in the middle of this sea of glass, an old Nissan Patrol, short wheel-base, lying on its roof, every window popped, the roof crushed. The Indian man lying flat on his back up along the concrete divider is wearing a pink shirt and brown trousers and he’s horribly still. The man in the blue shalwar khamis doesn’t quite know what to do: he picks the man’s head up in his arms, lays it down gently, stands up, crouches down, looks around.

The glass is crunching under the tires now, the feeling of fingers on dishwasher-dry squeaky crystal: the piercing squeak of glass on glass and occasional pop of shards squeezed into flight. A horrible, nails on blackboard shudder passes down my spine.

Another Ramadan evening drive home, then.

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