So I made it to Kerala, I'm terrible about calling people to let them
know I'm safe, but it's happened. A thirty hour train is a great place
to get sick and I did but I auto-reikid my way out of it with the help
of some nellika (amalki, amli, indian gooseberry, fruit of eternal
life), to find myself catching a bus from Calicut (Kozhikode) to
Sulthan Batthery last night and what was that for sale in the fruit
Yes, yes, oh oh yes. At 35 Rs. a kilo and none too sweet at that but
still a yellowing-red Indian mango. And the skies parted and darkness
shied her face and the angels dusted their bansuris blowign out
"Hari Om Tat Sat Jai Guru Datt"
And I bought two to take to Bosemash and all was right with the world.
So, welcome to Kerala, tripper. I got to his house and his first words
after "What a great surprise" (apparently CBose doesn't check his
email...) was "Now you will change into a lungi" and I did and I know
-- for this time in my life at least -- everything has changed. I wake
up to the wrestling of two little girls jabbing at me in Malayalam
(which I will learn, dammit, if I have to stoop to prayer to get it
done) and I'll never wear pants again and it's the dry season in the
wet country and the way the water beads on the flat wide leaves almost
punctures my hard heart and makes me cry.
I spent the train ride down here reading throught the 90 pages of
typed notes I have from last trip's dandi yatra and felt strangely
unmoved. I'll work it into something with punctuation no doubt, and
how much I'm not sure. But it'll be a good daily work for my time
here, in addiiton to the flute and the meditation. I feel like I'm
sinking deeper and deeper into that -- karuna sagar -- that ocean of
compassion that is out there, beckoning and chuckling quietly, waiting
for its lost tribes to sit up, lay aside their spectacles, exhale, and
let themselves drown...
black panthers head back to the motherland: