For the whole of each day, between the early-morning head-count
and the evening meal, we moved about within a large
courtyard that was attached to our dormitory room. Some men
played cards or other games. Some talked with friends, or
tried to sleep on the stone paths. Not a few
men, shuffling uncertainly on thin, tottering legs, talked a twitching
madness to themselves, and stumbled into the walls until we
turned them gently and set them on a new course.
The evening meal consisted of watery soup, made of the
peelings of vegetables, ladled out onto our flat aluminum plates.
Paraphrases from the novel Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts.