P1000249 - Version 2

Goa — December 24th 2012

Joe’s walking out to cool off in the Arabian and I’m writing at a table in the cabana with a cold beer. Goa. India. However did we get here? Chennai was insane. Landed, bribed the customs officer to get Joe in, taxied in a cyclone of cars and motorbikes, tuk-tuks and dust. Got to the train station without a second to loose.  Hundreds of sleeping bodies gapped on the floor like human hurdles, jumping over everyone to find the ticket window that must have vanished with the sun. We say fuck it and jump on a train without a ticket. Find the engineer, “Can we get a seat?” We ask. “Yes sirs,” He says, “but there will be a penalty…” Of course there will, we say to each other.

I couldn’t sleep. Outside the Indian scalp was obscured by darkness. What is Bangalore going to be like in the morning? As I’ve written earlier: masala dosas, learning to eat with my right hand, cows, bright spices, the market where I was lifted by a sea of people and saw hills of roses and pythons of Hindi garlands choke the stench out of the gutters. I. As. Individual. Lost in the sea of everyone.

That’s how we got here.

It’s almost Christmas. I biked on the sand and found an ancient payphone and made my call home. I’m so content. We’ve put the chaos of city traffic behind us for now. That braided confluence of humans, animals and machines all partaking in a flood that can only be described as a river acting naturally. It was exciting and terrifying and beautiful like love is perhaps.

Now here, realizing I got a lot of life left in me, I find no discernible difference between the crashing waves of the sea, and the incoming tide of souls who flooded Bangalore’s flower market. But I’ll take the calm for now; it won’t be long before Mumbai. I’m never happier than on the road…

I think I’m going to join Joe and take a swim.

There is so much more to see. Travel is the unreal real that unmasks life to its most fundamental components.

Merry Christmas.


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