One Year Ago, Today

I know, I know. I haven’t been about much lately. I’m trying to put a book together. I think I’m over the shock of return. At least I think I am. I wake up every morning, write in my journal–it’s not a travel journal anymore I suppose–and then sit down at the computer to write–or organize. Battling through organizing a book is no easy task. There is much more to it than just simply sitting down and banging some shit out on a type-writer, erm, keyboard. I’m not staying out in suburbia any longer, either. Got my own place now. The cave, I like to call it, where I can blast the AC, hunker down with coffee and beat my digits to a pulp every morning.

After that I try and get out. Getting out is critical to my sanity these days. Before I left for Singapore I spent far too much time at home, on the internet, inside a book, etc. . . than was healthy. After a year away I’m fitter than I have been since I was 25. And so, freaks of nature, I’m actually running a bit. My back is still sketchy at times, but I don’t push it too far. But I resent having to ‘jog’ for my exercise. I resent not being able to walk out into my city and just live. I miss walking. I miss the ‘near misses’ and serendipity of the world. So, I go out and try to make some of my own. I smile. I chat people up. (They probably think I am crazy.) When I am at my favorite coffee shop and all the tables are full, I invite people who need a table to sit with me. No better way to make new friends. I’ve carried the world with me and in my own way I hope I’m making this a better place. “The little things,” I tell myself. And I am learning, like Iyer that “epiphanies, after all, are the easy part–it’s the acceptance of the everyday that comes hard.” Yes, Pico, it does. But I haven’t given up.

Every now and then a thought pops into my head, “maybe you ought to get a real job.” I explore the thought. “Why should I?” The answer: “Maybe to buy a new car? Get a nicer place. Some flashy new clothes?”

Doesn’t take long, does it? All those old messages, same habits. I’m resisting. Although, I do need new clothes. They are all so huge on me. Sometimes it looks like I am wearing a burka. (And I’m also fleeing down to Mexico for two weeks, also.) Funny, a year ago today I wrote this:

The sun shines all morning.

But then, the barometer plummets, all motion, movement is sucked from the air.

The wind stops.

All is still but the clouds above swirl, growing dark, angry as the humidity rises. Air and water congeal like gelatin or melted cellophane.

The clouds grow darker yet, while sweat glistens at your temples, behind your ears, dripping down your forehead. Then, and only after heat and humidity enervate everyone and everything around you does the rain start.

Only a few drops at first sound off on the eaves and canopies across the city but slowly, remorselessly the sound builds like a crescendo.

Alas, one is always caught without an umbrella: wet, sweaty, humid and hot.

After what seems like forever the rain dissipates. The winds kick up again, sending the showers south, or east, or west or north and soon the sun is shining through heavy, tropical clouds, shining as it ever was, as if nothing had ever happened.

We could use the rain here. Couldn’t we?

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