Meet the market men

A hot morning. Samosa’s for breakfast to start me off. Walking through the markets that abut the railway station. Markets appeal to me. Not their sense of crumbling aesthetic, nor their smells nor the slippery-under-foot sludge of something rotten leftover. The people. Market people make good pictures. Markets are masculine. A place for men to toil and sweat. Nobody really cares as long as they can get their basket filled. But I care. In my salad days I worked to pick the fruit that filled the trucks that piled the stores … to be plucked by delicate hands and placed inside dainty baskets. Empathy enables camaraderie. We are all brothers. We share a joke, a piece of fruit. “Where are you from? Ah, my brother in law emigrated to there… I haven’t heard from him in years, must be a good life.” I nod and turn and think it’s a long way from here. Poor bastard. Another photo opportunity. I’m off. Walking. The meat section. Meaty men all guts and beards and broken tooth smiles. “Where you come from?” I worked the meat freezers too. After school … a year washing trays and hauling carcasses slung over my shoulder. Camaraderie makes good images. And the colours. Colours are gorgeous in Sri Lanka; textured and weathered and bold as the midday sun. Colours make the decay seem more palatable. You gotta a grimy looking joint, just dab on some cobalt blue. Douse the walls in sunflower yellow. Colours make good pictures.










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