Change walks quietly
What almost no one anticipated had just happened. Mahinda Rajapaksa, the man who seemed invincible, ruling Sri Lanka with an iron fist for the past decade, had conceded defeat without a fight. Sri Lanka had a new president without any protests, curfews and violence. Yet, on the day the election results were announced, almost no one was out to celebrate. “Why are the streets so deserted?” I asked our local contact. “This is not India. We are not that expressive or excitable, so don’t expect to find that TV moment here,” he said. Some people we met around our hotel said, “Yes, we are very happy”, but without the slightest change in tone, with complete nonchalance. Nothing appeared to faze them, perhaps the result of having endured a brutal civil war for over 30 years. “For years, I would drive my child to school every day, not knowing when a bomb would go off, if we’d live another day,” our contact explained. I suppose that living with that constant fear would make you far more resilient than most people. Also less inclined to emotional displays.