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‘Drunkle’ (drunk + uncle) is a term coined in the last decade by Sri Lankans to capture the hilarity of the token drunk uncle at weddings, funerals and even by the roadside ‘wine store’ come seven pm. Isn’t it fascinating how a single word can be coined with a collective story behind it?

Years ago, when we saw this watercolour painting at a Barefoot Gallery show, it struck us as a work of art that captured the story of the drunkle so well. When we met its artist Chaminda Gamage and heard the real story behind it, the painting became even more interesting. Chaminda told us how the painting was based on a real-life professional drunkle in southwestern Sri Lanka, whose job was to draw toddy (a sweet, freshly drawn coconut-based alcohol popular in Sri Lanka) from his acreage, and sell it to other drunkles. We like the authenticity of how Chaminda captured the toddy maker’s suggestion ‘rā bomu’ (drink some toddy) in Sinhala script with no question mark to hint at his cocksureness, completed with the tipsy eyes, gorging lips, and the cut on the cheek from some drunken brawl.

16” x 19” framed

Rā Bomu: framed original watercolour painting

Out of Stock