The food trolley with the squeaky wheel arrives in the Outpatients’ Department. It is laden with with warm cling-wrapped food. Rice, pumpkin, beans, and on a good day, some meat.
Surreptitiously a lull descends over OPD. You know you are really hungry when hospital food looks appetising.
Doctors conclude their current consultations and walk to their homes, scattered around the hospital grounds.
Taxi drivers at the rank – right next to the hospital – lean back in their seats, drawing peak caps over their eyes. Goats continue their conquest of the hospital grass. Geese hiss at passersby. Babies suckle noisily while their mothers stretch out on a patch of grass outside the hospital. Women with makeshift stalls sell snacks and cheap cooldrinks.
The woman who lives in the caravan across from the hospital starts up her gas fire. The child on her back waves at me, as he always does.
It is an infernally hot day. In the quiet, the community readies itself for the second half.
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