Monday, 20 April 2009

Lunch at Michael's

The day started with gloomy skies and we figured that it was most probably going to pour it down with rain again. Well, Michael Fish would be very impressed at our weather forecasting abilities as we were spot on!
We had arranged to meet Michael for lunch at his house because it was to be our last full day in Cox’s Bazar. We began walking and reached about halfway between our hotel and the meeting point; and that’s when it started. A torrential downpour of rain that caused all the open sewers to overflow. We took cover in a small arcade in the town and waited for the rain to pass over. It didn’t completely pass over but conditions lifted so we could carry on and meet our friend at a lake in the backstreets of downtown Cox Bazar. We met up as planned and continued towards Michael’s house.

We got caught out because it began to tip down with rain again, but even harder this time. We sought cover once again in a small shop where a scruffy man with very dirty hands was fixing old radios and cassette players. We stopped for about ten minutes, watching rickshaw wallahs frantically pedalling by, as well as fruit sellers sitting in the street, some of whom had made small half-tents out of sticks and dustbin liners, and some whom were readily equipped with ponchos. Still there were rivers of dirty brown sludge flowing down towards the main street.
We dashed to Michael’s house after agreeing that the rain wasn’t going to stop anytime soon. We entered his house via a tiny, muddy path and up some steps made from slippery sandbags. His house is made mostly from wood, with concrete flooring, and large leaves making up the ceiling. From the outside, the roof was made of corrugated iron upon which the rain drummed out an urgent rhythm to the background of thunder and lightning. It was great being sheltered, looking out at streaming rain and towering, swaying palm trees as we ate our scrumptious lunch.
Lunch consisted of a spinach and green bean side dish, a bowl of smoky potatoes with the occasional prawn, and a watery lentil concoction, all accompanied with rice. We took to the traditional way of eating once again, and ate with our right hands without any cutlery. Since we arrived in Bangladesh we have been converted to eating solely with our hands. The big question is, will we be converted back to using knives and forks?
Our entire time in CB has been both fulfilling and fascinating. It was sad saying farewell to our new friend, and hopefully we will see him again: certainly we will be looking at raising funds for his projects, as humanitarian issues in Bangladesh seem to be absent from the consciousness of the bourgeois west. Michael presented us with some great gifts


  1. No spoonz for thr lentil soup ?

  2. Should catch up with your wonderful blogs tomm..
    PS mother is fine.