Thursday, March 4, 2010

Early Morning Dili

I try to get a walk in every morning before work and before the heat. That means going out around 6 a.m.

Roosters are crowing all about, dogs are lying in the street -- scratching themselves and there is only the occasional sound of a distant muffler-less motor-bike. It's pretty peaceful.

It's still dark, but the mountains to the east are beginning to show just a hint of daylight by 6:30. Thirty minutes later and the tropical sun burst over the mountains and the cool night air begins to mix with the warm rays of the sun.

Lots of people are out and about at this hour -- all for the same reason -- to avoid the heat. This morning, I power-walked past the former Timorese president and his entourage of six or seven bodyguards.

Further along, a man in a worn AIG t-shirt was behind a push cart -- loaded with five liter plastic containers of kerosene -- to be used in cooking stoves.

Some fishermen had built a small fire on the beach -- they sat around chatting -- probably about that morning's catch.

As I wound around the street toward my house, I spotted a man with a backpack at the edge of the soccer field. He was squatting next to a huge puddle of water -- dipping his hands into it -- washing his face, head and neck.

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