Monk on Wheels
(The Muslims in this area don’t wail until 5:30am for their
morning call to prayer (Adhaan). They are at it at quarter to (4:45am)… Of
course I have them beat, as I begin my morning workout at 2:30, for the two -
(sometimes) three - hours it takes to complete. It is an extensive workout I
have developed throughout the years and for the last four months have honed to
a point where it has accelerated my healing process exponentially.)
It is raining
– beautifully, as I lay on the best mattress system I have ever come across in
my nearly 54 years on the planet.
It is the rainy season (re: monsoon time), and I am reading
a novel about the future from the New York author Caleb Carr. I am just past
the middle of the book as it is just past the middle of the day and I have just
come back from a walk around Pai, Thailand.
There was some purpose in my walk as I wanted to check a
sign I saw when I returned to this place three day ago.
It was a sign about a free cooking class.
(Oh, the sound of the rain is so very beautiful.)
After studying the posted map of where the cooking class is to
be held I continued my walk, turning left to check out a long-sleeved (light
weight) denim shirt I had noticed two days ago. It has four pockets and if my
current budget allows, I will be able to buy it just before I leave this
healing place, a few days after my Life-day.
There was no one in the shop, so I just finger-touched the
hanging shirt and walked up the street turning right, at the next intersection
looking to see if the mushroom man was at his wife’s shop in his usual position
in his hammock, reading a book – Just two days ago when I met him for the first
I had told him, his name is Willow…I had told Willow about
Carr’s great read, ‘The Alienist,’ along with its follow-up, ‘The Angel of
The shop wasn’t open; so I retraced my steps but didn’t make
the returning left turn, instead, continued straight.
A procession was leaving
a temple as I passed the store I have two days earlier brought a two
pocketed light weight blue denim shirt from, giving the woman owner a wave,
which she returned. She remembered me from the purchase of the shirt, and
because I came by just yesterday looking for a (hand) towel, which she doesn’t
Instead of continuing down the road, where my guest house is
located, a little distance away. But I didn’t go straight to the guest house.
Instead I turned left on a side street where some days ago. I walked a bit and
turned right on to the side street where Ginger’s restaurant is located, and
went to her place. She was closed, the sign said, until tonight at 6, when
there would be a buffet. I know I won’t be going to the buffet tonight as I
started a fast just yesterday; only fruit in the morning and salad in the
afternoon. Even though today I will have almonds instead of salad.
I then retraced my steps back to the road on which I am
living for the next 24 days; before returning to Chiang Mai, then Bangkok, and
finally to Cape Town, South Africa -- where I intend to make my base of
operations for the rest of my days.
After I crossed the main intersection, I headed for the
place with a very tasty falafel, hummus, and tahini on pita bread sandwich.
Before I got to that eating establishment a turned right on
yet another side street, and walked this street past the tattoo place. The
street eventually dumped me onto one of the four major streets in Pai. I turned
right on that street and followed it to the end, which transforms to a bamboo
bridge spanning a ravine leading to the establishment showing movies on DVD
Just two nights ago I saw a Johnny Depp film there. I don’t
think I will be seeing the Russell Crowe starrer tonight, so I retrace my steps
once again and made a left onto the road that ends on the major street to which
I am the only guest at my guest house as the tourist season is over.
It was sunny this entire time and I was thinking of visiting
moon village, which would have necessitated me making a left turn on my street
instead of the right that bought me ‘home;’ And back to this bed and reading
and drinking water as I ease into my fast, which will last I don’t know how
long – certainly no longer than 21 days.
As I got in the door and disrobed and made myself
comfortable, propping up pillows to read, the rain began. Thus I had a perfect
walk in the middle of a perfect day, in a perfect place called Pai.
…Near the end of a perfect six month trip; closing a stellar
journey that started some, almost, nine years ago.
Edited from the Schirin-Jan letters
It is now officially official; my Life-day, as it is 6:15pm
in the South Bronx of New York City
– Where I first breathed breath; while wailing my presence
to the universe.
…Life in this realm of what I used to believe was an
Yes, I could be heard to say most of my life:
We are all living in purgatory;
for if things are perfectly good,
we would be in heaven;
and if everything is perfectly evil
we would be in hell!
But, I no longer believe this to be the case; not after last
A perfect night.
A night that found me in a hammock, rocking, as fire flies
danced all around. And the blue candle I lit bore a steady flame.
As the rushing river sent its’ sound-soothing through me and
onto the full moon, which cleared a path through the bright cloudy night sky
here in a place call Pai.
As I lay here with the companionship of the sounds of the
night – insects, and animal, with one of the dogs asleep under this meditative
shelter… I realize many things… but a most important revelation comes through
louder. It stems from something my host is fond of saying for those who can
hear: Everything past now is a lie!
After last night, in the self-contained holy place, this
phrase now means, for me:
Everything in the past is the perfect truth, and as I accept
the perfection of this truth, I will push forward, onward – making a lie of the
These were/are my thoughts on this life-day in the creative
continuance of my Life journey, 2004…….Anon