Tuesday 16 October 2018

Feeling so empty and dispirited as our worlds drift apart

Diary

Haunted by its past: Krakow, Poland, is just an hour’s drive from Auschwitz, where many died in the Nazi concentration camp
Haunted by its past: Krakow, Poland, is just an hour’s drive from Auschwitz, where many died in the Nazi concentration camp

Fergal Keane

All night the mosquitoes whine, elusive and malign, my hand claws at the air in half sleep and I wonder if this will be the trip where cerebral malaria strikes home.

The heat is of the evil variety. It fills the air with the rank odour of blocked drains and rubbish dumps. When the dawn finally comes I rise and find I am drenched in sweat. So is the pillow. So are the sheets.

Somewhere in the middle of the night the mosquitoes were joined by ghosts of old horrors. No surprise. Walking to the window I look out and see the brown soup of an equatorial river meandering through the morning haze. Out there living and dying has already begun. Nobody with any power to change things cares much about what it is going on here. I am in a place of butchery and despair. Of this place I will write on another day.

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