first of all, let me note that i was just informed that "blogspot" (including myself) has been banned in india (along with other blogging tools), so i can't actually read what i'm posting (via email). i'll take this attack on digital liberty, on the part of the indian government i'm assuming, as some sort of absolution for all my typing errors. whose existence i would lay at the door of third-world keyboards in general, anyhow.
second of all, mateo has left for chennai and the ten day vipassana retreat which awaits him. if you don't know what vipassana is, i can only suggest that you do it (www.dhamma.org). it's an amazing ten-day silent trip into inner space that can only result in the pure positive result of you being more who you are. which is to say, love and/or god.
third of all, i dropped him off in mysore. mysore is a snug indian city amidst sandalwood forests and soap factories, in which i had absolutely no idea what was going on. the reality of travelling in india, it came to me, is very, very scary. i took a three hour bus away from our cozy indian solution -- replete with dosas, mangos, and kitchy portraits of whatever gods are nearby -- to end up in a totally foreign climate, language, culture, and ambience. thank krishna there were still mangos everywhere or i would have totally lost it. we ended up walking away the afternoon through back alleys and large urban cow pastures (as in, no grass and very large uddered cows) and -- and this is india -- the worst that happened to us in a seedy area of an unknown city where we were literally clueless was walking down a non-veg street bordered by dead chickens. which was pretty nasty, but nothing like what red hook had in store for us that bygone year...
so i've now segued into yet another stretch of the indian solution. another week of intense music practice -- which is destroying some deep and wounded parts of the self, all too slowly for any pretense of comfort -- and then a group of gringas arrives to carry me through my final keralan week. in anticipation of the general stare festival that will surely ensue, i've begun marketing 50 rs. "stareathon" tickets to at least recuperate whatever rice ("food") expenses these ladies unpack in the spacy red foregroud of the monsoon hotel.
speaking of which, mateo's cd, "live july at the monsoon hotel", has been recorded successfully; if the cookbook project (still in progress) is any indication, the real work can now truly begin. i'll post some tracks as soon as sony lets me.
and, speaking of marketing, once again, i am now selling ten thousand copies of the cookbook, which has been prehumously renamed "Cooking can be God" for the second edition. which means, naturally, you are now buying a copy.
so, thanks for that. in the way that all class struggle can be rosily viewed as mere prehistory before this golden age of social relations and jam sessions that marx has forecast for us all, this cookbook proejct and all her antecedents are the mere prehistory of my projects heretodate.
i'm feeling a sense of closure. the shifting temperatures of the border regions. a looseness of footing and spring in my step. indian and i are almost through, for a time. i've almost given up the deeply buried notion that i am not and cannot be a musician. i'm already, strangely, over cooking. and i'm ready to go home.
luckily and unfortunately for our heroes, home does not exist. as the situationists burned into my brain
"the hacienda must be built"
which is what the next step is all about. i'll be leaving india, taking a warm bath, selling ten thousand cookbooks, and moving back to sequim to start an ashram. the lost mountain observatory. a festering pit of possibility. an integration of tropics and temperance, of henry miller and aurobindo, of gandhian clarity of value with a burning man's insistence on the present. the Only gift, as it were.
there are plenty of details in terms of how large you can build a shack before it falls under the shadow of the county code and how we're going to transition off the grid in a couple years. and they've been largely worked out. so at this point i'm psyched to be going home, to be planting trees, to be finishing all the strange books, programs, theories, and projects that five years of wandering have saddled alongside me.
and, if you are reading this, it probably means i hope to see you there.