Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Lenny, I hardly knew ye. Truth and Aravac pay a visit to their neighbor heading west.

A garden of Eden, a tribute to love, a year to grow fonder, and a reason for our ultimate return.
When Aravac and Truth arrived, a Tuk-Tuk carried them over the bridge and into a simpler life. Simple and slow.

Tomalitos and fermented pineapple juice gave us heavy hearts and stomach. Aravac steered us on the bumpy ride through town. A slow life on a fast motorbike, this is how we'd eventually make our way westward, some day.

"Whiskey," we all said in unison for our last photograph. Wendy held the bikes as we boarded the last bus. A last goodbye, we never could have, for we barely had time to exchange our bags. Tea for Lord Jim, but without ostentation.

Sad to see ya go,
back home...

Bobby Angelle- I Wanna Go Back Home

Sunday, July 26, 2009

-Rios Negro & La Pasion
Truth and Aravac sail rivers North & South; Chixoy to Sayaxche, ghost town to port town.

The eerie Negro showed nearly no signs of life. A band of white limestone marked the 30 foot drop in the water level but the bottom of this river would never be touched by human hand. Hopping over jagged rocks to slip into the cool, calm, consistency.

A riverboat near a mile high dam saw my bobbing head and came over and offered to take us up river. A lone goat was the most that any of the steep mountainsides could home. Water fell from cracks in the stone and each of the natural trellises fed into its black depths.

We arrived at clay huts beyond all expectations of life.

"That green pasture would be a great place for a longsword battle." Yes, there had been a battle. Now there was sobering peace. Only the river and memories. The clouds were painted a perfect pattern to contrast the stark chiseled landscape. The tiniest sprinkles of watery beads bounced along as my hand stretched to catch them.

The sun was warm and water was kind. I exchanged strange sounds with children of an unchanged language. The boat landed near the dam and we felt the weight being held behind its walls. Three families formed a chain, with the one motored boat, pulling the wooden hulls.

Sayaxche is a much different story. The ferry took cars across 10 times a day, but we found a man heading upstream. A relentless storm came and poured all its might. We were contained by our emotionless captain His face did not change. He simply slid through the channels, maneuvering mangrove, and beached us inside a lagoon.

An old city had experienced an earthquake long ago and was split in two halves. We threaded the split like a soggy back alley and the jungle roared. Monkeys showed their resentment. This was their home.

Rick was pleased.

Jungle still exists where the moss of the forest can make pillows on ancient stones.
The sun set and Truth was left to the insects. The buses had run, the storm had come, and our luck to hitch a ride in the bed of a pickup truck was tested by the relentless cold of mountain rain and wind.

Finally did we feel the wear of the open road?
We would soon find out.
Salama at Sunrise...

Wilson Pickett- Get Me Back On Time

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

-San Juan Chamelco
Pluto was aligned in Sir Truth's favor on this bright and colorful day.

As Guillermo, Aravac, and Truth began their uphill journey, bicycles roaring up a stony dirt road, the first obstacle was a flat suffered on a downhill careen. A boy at the taller de bicicletas, patched the tire and tightened the brakes, then charged us less than 3 quarters.
Once again we ripped along; each hill bigger than the one before it.

Men with machetes took pride in the land.

We made it to Rey Marcos cavern before realizing that the man we sought, Don Heronemo, was not there. We knew not what to expect, but our senses quickly heightened as we entered the heavily guarded gate leading to his place.

The frequency of the Earth is said to vibrate at different rates throughout the world. Tree ferns and narrow rivers must exhibit some of the lowest frequencies and stepping from the bridge to soft magical soil.

A family of hummingbirds hovered around and waited with us for the caretaker. The snow white beard of a wise man appeared and he introduced himself as Bob. He made delicious coffee and in the most pleasant way, discussed all things relevant and otherwise.

Wholesome mellow energy is in affect.

"If you have wishes, this is the place," Heronemo said of the Chicoy Caves four kilometers north of Perulha. A spiritual ceremony never ensued, but the talk of such things was generating a deep appreciation for the circumstances of our combined being.

Hope you like the song,

Don Bob...

Joe Bataan- Magic Rose

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Doña Martita makes the call and a door is opened to the finest speakeasy in town.

Truth and Aravac were only looking for a simple meal; what they found, was so much more. Panini's! The two, never averse to new, were lead through a door, down stairs, and revealed, to Angel's immaculate bar 'Equinoccio'.

The food is as perfect as Angel's English. We ate whilst he explained the new business. "You know guys, Guatemalans need a standard, people need a healthy alternative."

Angel's excitement grew and grew with each story he told us. His knowledge of the land was unique and his stories gave perspective, that others weren't willing to take. Politics, film, photography, carrot juice, and we didn't even have anything from the bar. That would be for next time; there will certainly be a next time.

"Coban isn't ready for a place like that," said Aravac.
"No, it certainly is not..."

The Expressions- These Moments

Sunday, July 19, 2009

-Huatulco, Tapachula, Solola, Panajachel
Sir Truth is gone, real gone; beyond the sounds of Superior and Inferior, where cliffs hang, holding salty bathwater, and treading with the sea captains of tiny wooden vessels. Gone but not forgotten.

The reemergence of his character, comes after a long spell of fun, and a lack of electricity.
As the Chapin women have diverted much of my defecited attention, the clouds and volcanic smoke mark the coming of another perfect night. Joined by kindred McSip,
the two set out on the bow of the Jucaña, bound for Santiago.

As we slipped in, like algae to the crystal lagunas, a perfect place for laundry, the boys of the beach spoke Poqomam and Nahautl between jousts of Sir Truth's Spanish. A flip silenced them and a game was made after diving from the starboard end of a 60 ft. catamaran.

A place for bathing, a place for futbol, and more Moza and Gallo and test our tolerance. Through the reeds and the soft placid water, we both floated along like pieces of paper, the locals so carelessly toss. Laundry cost us more than our room and board. Our bargaining tactics were unbeatable, so we chose the traje to suit us best, and now blended in better than the pale geckos of the night.

We were joined by local folk musicians, Pattie and Jack, as the four of us, demonstrated our dance. "Get back, get back, get back to where you once belonged!"

If only these people can sustain their world,
the tourists need them and they need the tourists.
A poor dependant house of cards; a crystalline body of water, settled in jungle, surrounded by mountains, and flourishing with life, nearly more life than a world can support.

These are the Mayan children.
Los hijos del Sol
what a life

...until Coban

Mandrill- Children of the Sun

Friday, July 10, 2009

What is the difference between everything and nothing?
A study of the universe leads Sir Truth to his next dramatic conclusion:
"Everything is the question for which nothing is the answer."

24 hours from Santa Clara and the mountains did not stop. Past San Cristobal, Chiapas, and an infinite desert, the bright lights of Oaxaca shown. We were truly huddled masses when we arrived.

Truth was vigilent in staying conscious for the experience, but as we collapsed on the steps of Santa Domingo, our hopes were clouded with doubt. Mezcal was our morning medecine and as we approached the absolute strangers in the street asking about gringo girls, (my sister and Em), we found that causing a scene would be the only way to attract their attention.

We gazed upon a massive stadium at the peak of the overlooking mountain and the pace of our new home began to pick up. Oaxaca is quite the oasis. We found the gringo girls and they fed and bathed us to the point of composure.

The scene was thick. Our pace grew slower and slower as each Mezcal stand offered up the tastiest samples. Fruti Crem employed all the local beauties. Truth was invited in many directions by smells and art scattered in every crevace of the old cobbled streets.

Graduates from the local law school celebrated in front of their. They greeted us with a keg splashing cups and singing songs of misunderstanding. Sir Truth illustrated a bit of dirty American flavor offering a keg stand display. This was not nearly as exciting as the ´toques´that we experienced next.

A man with an electrical box around his neck joined our circle, and each of us set our cups down, to join hands. The excitement was growing. We were about to be electricuted.

"Mas, mas, mas!" we yelled, egging the electrical vendor on.
He increased the voltage. We laughed hysterically. My wrists felt most of the shock.
Electric shock therapy really works.

The teachers found my keg stand a little too rowdy, as they dragged what was now, the forth keg away.

We were advised. Good advice is not so hard to come by in Mexico.
Sir Truth goes to Puerto Escondido next.

see you space caballero...

Sam Cooke- Having a Party

Saturday, July 4, 2009

-4th of July Party
(Not exactly ODD, but the crew could dig it)
Sir Truth now has friends all over the world. Big up to the Gaston Lake crew, Fellows, and the heart burn that doesn´t come from too much booze. Know that Truth will always manage to keep the heart satisfied.

This particular occasion marks the celebration of our independence. ¨Only America the beautiful would send it´s brightest youth abroad.¨

Even in Guatemala, the American expressions of freedom could be heard. DJ spin another, those with talent show it, dancers dance, and let the breakers break. Ain´t no party like a volunteer party ´cause everybody gives it their all.

Truth is, I always knew how to dance, but there´s nothing like a little possum in order to get the indigenous to explain the art of Meringue.

Corn on the cob, Gallo, Cabro, Moza, and ´tater salad. Independence never felt so good, especially in the visceral 3rd world, where everything is pragmatically real.
Enjoy this one, not for me, but for freedom.

Ray Charles- America the Beautiful

Friday, July 3, 2009

-Santa Lucia
Sir Truth is not a missionary, but he is on a mission.

As the volunteers struggled to understand the meaning of ´that dude´, (Sir Truth), I set my ears on the campaigns of Save the Children, Pura Vida, and Lenny, my newest friend.

Lenny and I decided that motivating the 3rd world could be as simple as plugging them into some of the technology with which I find myself so enthralled. Would not a documentary film festival empower any native of any origin to share their story? We undoubtedly thought yes.

Pura Vida, a Costa Rican term, is spreading in more ways than one. With the growing trends of plastic, Styrofoam, and other indispensable wastes that have found their way into poor hands, the problem of what to do with it all seemed not to have an answer. Houses, benches, bathrooms, etc... are now the positive outcome that is thought to solve all disposable waste. It is true. People here are beginning to collect all their plastic bags in plastic bottles, which are then used for construction.

Truth be no colt follower; but the noble pursuit of happiness brings about a need for organized help. That is why I have decided, after Israel, your friend will enlist. His energy, ideas, and attitude, is exactly what the developing world needs. Besides, Durham will keep the embers as long as I stay away.

Too much gringo makes Truth a poor Spanish speaker.
Tomorrow Lake Atitlan bound for Oaxaca.
Truth will join kin there.

Blinky- Never Give You Up

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

-San Juan Sacatepequez
Rafino Aravac and Sir Truth set out after a breakfast at the Black Cat and hopped the autobus in search of the world class Kenyans. The park in San Juan is well decorated for the holiday but it is unclear as to what is being celebrated. Sir Truth believes it is simply life.

This episode marks the search for Don Demasco!

Every villager was questioned as to Don´s whereabouts and finally we found the good sir at his alternate adress. The Kenyans were nowhere to be seen. We were introduced to an exquisite family and fed a most amazing stew with pork, butternut squash, chiles, chayote, and much more.

My first Guatemalan friend was the son of Don Demasco, a boy of 18, named Oscar. We all called him Chino because his constant smile gave his eyes an asian affect. He immediately convinced me to come swimming in the local pool, visit an internet cafe, and meet his breakdancing friends in the park; I obliged.

As we rode he played the song ´Too Late to Apologize´which pleased him very much.
His breakdancing friends were actually just young acrobats flipping, standing on their hands, and jumping all over the park.

When we returned to the compound of the Demascus family, I found the Kenyans that we had originally set out to find. They were eating and enjoying conversation with the family. I soon found that they were, not only world class runners, but world class people as well.

I gave Chino and the Kenyans the adress of this site as well as my Oaxacan sister, as the Kenyans were about to travel to Mexico City, and Chino seemed genuinely interested to know her.

Night in San Juan is very dangerous and masked men of malice are known to run things. The Don took us to another compound that was nothing short of a summer camp. Unfortunately there were no kids at the camp, but we had our choice of bunks to sleep in. As the Kenyans, Aravac, and I prepared to meet the sandman, there was no question, we would have great dreams; the day itself had prepared us.

Friends around the world, here is the second call!
Share your story, and remind us why we miss you.
You shall see soon enough.

Don Covay- Come See About Me
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