Colombo before dawn is a different city. It’s the time when the resident animals go about their business, when their cries, clicks, barks and calls echo through the empty streets. Two mornings each week we rise before the sun on our way to Ultimate Frisbee. The lights go on and we stagger tired and blind around the house (our daily contact lenses are always everywhere except where they can be found), startling the mosquitoes and our friendly gecko.
I noticed this morning that he’s a different creature at this time of day, emitting a noisy clucking sound that fills the room like a mocking chuckle.
The Beast takes us through the quiet streets and junctions where the traffic lights flash amber until the morning rush begins. The air is thick with night time dew. Dogs, so sleepy and lethargic during the day, trot around completing important chores. Thousands of bats chatter like old ladies following their nights hunting mangoes, papaya and jack fruit.