Edward Snowden doesn’t like vegetables. Nadeeka* smiled at this as she washed the dishes in her small kitchen. The guest who had slept in her room for the last three days may have been the world’s most-wanted man, but when it came to his eating habits, he strongly resembled her daughter, Sethumdi. The meat disappeared, the side dish stayed on the plate. Now, on this hot summer day in 2013, Mr. Snowden and Sethumdi were playing in the hallway. Times like these, the American acted normal.
Nadeeka, a petite woman with jet-black hair, finished the dishes and went into the hallway. Her guest had withdrawn to his room again. She knocked on the door, opened it and found him bent over his laptop, as usual. Nadeeka told him she was going shopping. She felt sorry for the young American for having to spend so much time in the stuffy room. He looked at her for a moment, without moving. Then he said: “Nadeeka, I’m alive in this room. I’m dead outside.”