Thursday, July 30, 2009

Hungry Jack

It seems like everything in the ocean is food. A school of Horse-eye Jack are swarming some kind of leftover ichthyan. Later on we fried one of them in turn. In coconut oil. We used to pound Hungry Jack pancakes before there was Aretha Frankenstein's. These puppies didn't need any batter though. Caribbean lagoon, Northern Belize.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


The largest Maya ruin site in Belize still contains the tallest building in the country. Absolutely amazing. Hitching your pants way up, you can hoist up one leg after another to climb it in the sun. At one point, I heard some other tourist say "Did these people do anything but build stairs?"

Monday, July 13, 2009

In Fiji before sunrise, up a volcanic sealump to see what was. The path was unclear. Vague expectations. Familiar and strange blur together until one is the other. It's the bitter yum jitter before jumping off into a place I've never been.

To Belize tomorrow with my family and a five-dollar copy of the Popol Vuh. It's been a long time since I went anywhere with 'vacation' as the admitted task. After that, the nomadism continues. I don't know what's ahead any more than I ever have. Still no more sure of what I'll do and see than usual. How long should that remain a comforting thought?

Saturday, July 11, 2009


The woven top of a forest. It's a strange blanket that might evoke anything. This one covers the coves of Savage Gulf, Tennessee. Everything possible in a forest could be under there. You can see the whole vast expanse of the trees, but not into it. Sure, forests are everywhere. But when seen from above, they're suddenly mysterious. Suggestive by concealment. Like lingerie.

Friday, July 10, 2009

They had skyscrapers in the Neolithic, too.

Somebody set this up more than 2000 years ago. The old Celtic core of Brittany is still there for anyone who looks. But in AD 769, Charlemagne ordered local evangelists to slap crosses onto gorgeous old pagan Menhirs all over western Europe. So for about 3 millenia, this standing stone in Brignognan looked the way it was meant to. However, no one remembers it now without the graffiti crucifix. But we know the truth.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


Sun powered clouds build a storm and dissipate. Today's airshow at runway 2-4 Sewanee.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sea vs. Rock

Taking things back down to Aotearoa in a few weeks. The Otago Peninsula has a university and some friends, and lies in the sunward direction, if not exactly under it.

Monday, July 6, 2009


A regular goat has to spend 22 hours a day foraging for enough random weedy rifraff to keep itself alive. That's just to make meat. But a dairy goat that gets fed only has to spend 3 hours eating for subsistence - that means that the rest of the time, they're making milk. High summer in Khovsgol Province in Mongolia, powerbar slices of dried yak kurd solidify on a string over the stove. One window overhead in a yurt. Raw energy for some sunless frozen day.

I've been mending and gating a Tennessee goat's paradise lately. Expendable opposable thumbwork calories exchanged for portable goatmilk calories. We do the foraging for them, they make the juice that makes the cheese. Hurray for animal husbandry.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Gizz

A crack of thunder, then last night a storm. Everything was thirsty. The tin roof of the shack drummed in crescendoes with water. I stuck my camera in a plastic box and we went for a walk down the creek. Fiery Gizzard Cove is full of doomed hemlocks and slouchy water. No clear gossiping brook, but it's hard not to love.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Founding Fathers

Abe Lincoln might have known what he was doing, making sure there was one American Empire on this continent instead of two. I'm out of grandfathers, but Aunt June Frederick is 91 and reminding us all how to be. My maternal grandmother's older sister was a demigranma when I was little.

At that age, I didn't know that it was Independence Day because my Dad used to throw what he called The Fourth of July Gonzo Party. I just thought the rest of the country was copying him like I did. Fireworks. As they say in Montana, 'celebrate the independence of your country by blowing up a small part of it.'

Happy 4th