Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Home Again; Nearly Here for Six Months

Well, hello everyone. Just got back from a reasonably grueling 26 hours from Iquitos to Joshua. And while everything there in the jungle was difficult but rewarding, everything here is difficult, period. As per the trip, I think it went well. Lots of medicine for lots of very very good people. One or two nit-pickers who needed a bit of attention more than I wanted to give but what the heck, that's the job. So you don't sleep for 2 weeks and when you fall asleep at the restaurant table, the word is that you've been drinking. I've learned to live with that. Don't like it, but live with it. I drink enough to get blamed for lots of stuff, so when I'm innocent it's hard to explain/complain. Still, it wasn't until Saturday night, two nights after my group left with my partner Carolynne for Lima and the mountains, that I slept more than 4 hours. And then I had this minor heart attack, which left me slightly dead for about 36 seconds, so that sort of interrupted that nice sleep. The fall to the floor on the way to the bathroom left a couple of nasty cuts on my nose and forehead, but fortunately a couple of my crew were sleeping in my super-sized room and heard me fall and got me to the hospital post-haste and the docs there said: Well, you had a heart attack. Any problem with that?
No, I answered.
Well, stop being so damned anxious.
And that was that. COuple of hours of monitoring, all was good and now I'm good to go again.
Oh, and they told me to stop smoking 50 cigarettes a day. Like I woundn't if I could.
Other than that, and the fact that we had 4 jergon's in a three day period, three of which we killed, and the trip was good. Jergon's are pit vipers and when you're a couple of days from anywhere and there is no antivenin for them, well, I can only say we were lucky my team found them before they found my group.
But then I was coming home and supposed to meet Madeleina, leaving with Chepa and Sierra and Alexa for wherever Chepa's boyfriend lives, at the airport, and my plane was delayed several hours so we didn't meet. And if you don't think I feel blue about not seeing Madeleina before she left--against her will--to see boyfriend's parents for a month, well, then you have no idea who I am.
And Italo's girl, Sarah, who's lived with us for two-three years moved out while I was gone, though she showed up today. So that's another person gone. And the brand new stove/oven went out while I was gone but nobody noticed since they simply ran through the food I left and forgot to buy any, including for Boots, the wonderdog, who apparently has bitten four people in the last three weeks. No wonder, as no one has been feeding him. First thing I did yesterday when I got home was to buy and cook him a 5 pound chicken, then top that off with a rack of ribs and a pound of Pedigree dog food and some chinese Beef with broccoli with extra garlic, his favorite. He's a happy dog now. Tonight he got half a chicken and two pounds of ground beef. Can't have him biting the postman who brings me the checks now, can I?
Okay, so there's lots to tell. While away I won several awards from the Houston Press Club, and was the lead man on the Fort Worth Weekly's second place award in a new category in the national Alternative News Weekly awards, which is fairly excellent, and if Madeleina were here we'd still be banging the fantabulous jungle drum I brought her.
On the other hand, Juan, my pal whose place I use in the jungle and a son-in-law of my late teacher Julio, drank aya the other night and had a conversation with Julio in which Julio said I need to drink more ayahuasca to get strong again. And I know he's right, I've just been intimidated since Julio's death 18 month's ago. And I did drink a couple of times but now I've been directed to grab my cojones and drink a lot and so I'm looking for my cojones as I write this and hope I find them because mother ayahuasca has been making serious demands of me lately when I drink her and it's more than intimidating, it's freaking terrifying. But I know I have to step it up a notch or six and move to strength and I hope I have the fortitude to do that.
And while this ain't the best or most moving post I've ever written, it's what I've got to give right now and so I hope you all accept me for what it is.
And maybe tomorrow I'll be inspired while tonight I just wanted to give you all an update and let you know I have not forgotten about you. Not at all.
And I am missing you, Madeleina, in case you are reading this.

4 comments:

Jin said...

Good to hear from you again; I was wondering why you weren't posting. Take care of that heart.

daisyduke said...

I told you you´d hear from Julio...

Glad you made it back in one piece...hold onto that heart, man, it´s the only one you´ve got!

brief_respite said...

It's good to have you blog again.
Sorry to hear about the heart attack - glad you are well again. It's great that you give so much to the trips and the people around you, but maybe you need to learn to make time for yourself....
I'm looking forward to meeting you in the July.
Take care, Peter! : )

The Grudge said...

Peter! I am relieved that you are okay. Take care of yourself. You help so many, you should take care of yourself above all in order to be strong to help those around you. Take care man.