A baby’s wail echoes across the hospital . I wonder why it is that I can hear the same cry around the same time every day. It’s haunting but I am not scared. They are just babies and this is just a hospital where the sick come to be healed. There’s so much space here, every cry is amplified a thousand times wafting in at their own will if you keep the windows open.
There’s a baby next door who’s undergone multiple surgeries. The dressings of her wounds are clinging to her head and her belly. Her father, a small gaunt man, not older than me I’d think, carries her around , walking about, to entertain her. We sometimes sit in the lobby area looking out at Colombo, with it’s smoky atmosphere and the cluttered landscape. So-many-buildings! The baby looks at me, and my phone, undoubtedly liking the striking yellow color of it. I extend it to her, and she stares at me. She has wide clear eyes, her shaved head is bit too large for her tiny body. She has such a lovely smile. She scrutinizes my face and I wonder if she thinks I am ugly. A female doctor walks over to the baby and smiles but at the very sight of the doctor, the baby’s smile dies on her lips. She looks at her father who’s clearly distressed but he’s talking in subdued tones with the doctor. The baby wouldn’t let the good doctor touch her , no not one bit.
“Another time”. The doctor smiles. “When she’s more distracted” .
I walk back into the room where my mother’s sleeping, hoping to upload my 365.