Yet another White Night (Innoru Venniravu) by A.Santhan!
Translated by K.S.Sivakumaran
shadows lengthened and fell against the sunlight at seven in the evening. That
was the time of the white nights. We were walking along a street that branched
off from the Nevsky Highway in the city of Leningrad. Amirtha Akka, Thulasi,
Mohammed and I.
I am me. Amirtha Akka is from Colombo. Sinhala is her mother tongue. But she
is like a sister to me and Thulasi.
Thulasi comes from India, from Chennai in Thamilnadu. At the beginning I was
the connecting link between Amirtha Akka and Thulasi. However, they both
bonded themselves together very quickly without needing me. This was a
surprise. I had bonds of country with one, and language with the other, and
they had neither, but I wasn't sure whether they were not closer without such
The next one is Mohammed. He has the complexion of a rose. Dark curly hair.
Thulasi's friend was a Tunisian with red lips and cat's eyes. He has nothing
to do with this story. And yet he was also there with us.
None of us said anything important until had had ice cream, and then gone into
'Pulochnaya', the tea kiosk, and enjoyied a new flavour of t crispy bread,
aong with their black tea.
After coming out Thulasi said:
"Whatever said, this Georgia tea cannot come near our tea."
"True", said Amrita Akka.
"It's the Indian tea that's best"
"What are you saying, Thulasi?"
Amirtha Akka and I asked her in unison at the same time.
- This was originally written in 1988 by Santhan, a leading bilingual
(English & Thamil) creative writer and winner of Arts Council prize -