Monday, May 30, 2005

The Daily Dose May 28 2005

Buddha’s full moon,
Perfection,
An erection,
Lest I unwind
The balanced dime!

I’m ‘full of it,’
Says S/he
‘The writ,
The planet be!’
Buddha’s full moon,
Enlightenment,
I’ve paid the ‘rent!’

And now up ‘higher!’
To the ‘Roof of the World,’
Mt. Kailas,
An auspicious occasion,
This rising!

Buddha’s full moon!

So much is happening! I can hardly keep up with it, my life like a movie! The following is a compilation of days, thoughts and handwritten notes (of the past few days).

I’m on my way to Tibet and China soon, God willing. It’s been a struggle obtaining a Chinese visa to Lhasa, Tibet, and this time knowing people and having letters. Amazing… The first time in 1999, I just go to the Chinese Embassy, a naïve soul, and get two months in Tibet without any hassle. This time, nothing seems to work… Is it the Devas or the Asuras giving me a hard time? But, before going into detail…

I’ve basically reached my limit living in the Kathmandu Valley. On and off for eight months! If I hadn’t spent most of the time in Pharping, I wouldn’t have made it this long! Kathmandu, as I try to explain to Subodh (who is a native), is much too intense for me. I’m no longer a ‘city’ person! And now Shanghai (15 million) and Chengdu (11 million), and other Chinese cities… Ke garne? Keep on truckin’!

If you want a happy life, it’s simple! Sacrifice for others! I think this has to do with consciousness, and now I have some! In the beginning I had only an inkling!

Speaking of ‘ink,’ in the last eight months in Nepal I’m used (filled) 2,000 sheets of A4 (8.5X11+inch) paper! That’s 8 sheets of paper per day for eight months! That’s the kind of output I have been having (as a writer). And now I have Kilograms (1= 2.2lbs.) of files I can’t even take with me.

I will ‘escape’ Kathmandu just before the monsoon (rains every afternoon for three months), hot and muggy weather the kind I don’t like! I’ll take dry and cold over hot and humid any day! On the other hand, it’s the Nepali people (my friends) that have made my stay tolerable. They are so kind, every time I want to complain about whatever I don’t. I can get out. Most of them either can’t or wouldn’t think of such! Really there are parts of Nepal that are a paradise, if only they would stop killing themselves! STOP THE VIOLENCE!

It’s ironic to me, and most foreigners, that this land of Buddha, of religious tolerance, is in the throes of self destructing… At least the Hindus… The Buddhists don’t seem to be apart of it. What does that tell you?

But, there will be no peace in this country, in the world, until there is social justice! And there can be no social justice without consciousness (and humanity is low on such). There is certainly no justice with capitalism, Marx was right about this!

There is so much unrest in the world in 2005! This is the unrest of the unconscious mind, being projected onto the other person! It’s the ‘terrorists,’ cry the Bushies, thinking God is on their side. I’m afraid I have bad news for them! It’s the Christians that are the evil ones, cry the Arabs, seeing the hypocrisy in American thought, but not their own! It’s always the other guy/girl that’s to blame, not us! ‘We have met the enemy and they are us!’ said Pogo (an American comic strip character).

It’s really mind development we need in the world, not physical development! Until consciousness is at a higher level (than what’s evident in May, 2005), the internal unrest will be projected on others, creating violence and war!

So, let us make our ‘cry:’ We are coming together, everything and everybody! Coming together! People everywhere are coming together! All one people, all one earth, coming together! We are coming together, everybody and everything!

Saturday, May 28, 2005

The Daily Dose May 18 2005

For RAJAN PANTHI (the family)

A crow came and told me,
The other day,
You were going,
We will miss you!

But, we see you
In the morning sun
Renewed!
In children’s laughter,
In the OM of life!

You fly,
Shout,
Laugh,
Pray,
Cry,
Sigh,
Live,
Again
In the music,
Conversation,
Work, the
Thunder and lightening
Of existence!

You are ‘hear’
With us now,
Never to be forgotten
In the message
Of courage
You left behind!

‘I will speak to you
When you are alone.
Be still, know that I am God!’[1]

The foregoing was a poem I wrote about Rajan Panthi, a young man who died too young, of a horrible disease, Xeroderma Pigmatosa (a leprosy-type of cancer). Those so unlucky with, have to stay out of the sun, as ultraviolet rays worsen the affliction.

I first met Rajan via the Internet in 1997. It was by ‘chance!’ Or, I should say by ‘design,’ as I don’t believe in such ‘accidents!’ I was surfing the NET, when I came across his poignant cry for help. He knew he was dying, but was trying to help his brother (Gokul) and sister (Paru) who had the same affliction, but were not terminal (like he). I was so impressed, I printed it out and took it with me to Kathmandu in 1998.

In Kathmandu, I met a member of the U. Rayamadji family (I was living with), another young, unafflicted Rajan. But, I thought the new Rajan might find the Panthis on my behalf, and inform me of the situation. He did ultimately find them, but the family turned out, wanted to meet me. So, I went one day, and now some seven years later the saga continues. In the course of meeting the Panthi family, I also met C.M. Yogi, the headmaster of Hindu Vidyapeeth Nepal schools, and we’re friends to this day.

We were successful in getting the Panthi family to the U.S. (X.P. Society), but Rajan died in the meantime… Nee the poem (at the beginning).

In the Fall of 1999, I remember cranking from Brooklyn out to Jackson Heights, Queens one day to meet the New York City Panthi family. I had returned from Nepal after two years and was living with my new friend, Mitch Renner. I finally found their basement apartment, in a group of dismal-project buildings (the kind of place to live in I would not wish on my enemies). But, only the girls (Suntosi, and Parabati) were at home. Of course, the rest of the Panthis were out earning as much money as they could! Father, Narayan, worked as a cook at an Indian Restaurant in Manhattan.

For the next five years I was pretty much out of touch of the Panthi family, but received regular reports from their close friend and mine, C.M. Yogi.

Then when I arrived in Kathmandu last October (04), I found out that Narayan Panthi was the largest contributor to my ‘loan,’ ($700U.S.) which had helped me get to Nepal (via Martin Air, in The Netherlands). Isn’t it funny how good deeds come back to you in good ways…

Thus, I thought somewhat ironic that the day I made my last payment (May 19th), I should be invited to the Panthi family’s for dinner. This after they had been in India for oh so many months. There is such a thing as ‘spiritual time’ (when things happen at the proper moment).

Thus, last Thursday, I pedaled to Anamnagar (Kathmandu City), early of course, which gave me time to discover a new Nepali artist at Barber Mahal Revisited, Ragini Upadhyaya Grela. (Note: More on this woman’s work later.).

In fact, even stalling for time, I arrived twenty minutes early at the Panthi house, which gave me time to lock my bicycle and get inside before the deluge (rained hard while we were eating). I was almost shocked to discover C.M. was already there. Sharmila Yogi, one of C.M.’s lovely young cousins joined us, in Kathmandu City to try for a U.S. visa. She’s one of the dedicated teachers at HVP Dang. Note: Dang, the area in the far-west Nepal where all the Yogis are from.

We had a lovely dinner, with mangos for dessert! The Panthis, Narayan and Gokul much more articulate in English than in 1999.

But, Narayan doesn’t want to return to New York City, oh no thank you, five years of working seven days per week, twelve hours per day, riding the subway one hour each way… No thank you! Turns out his wife, Jannika and Gokul do. Gokul for X.P. Society Summer Camp, mother to be with her daughters.

It was so amazing to be in the Panthi living room again (in Anamnagar), after all these years. I think C.M. described it as ‘historic!’ The same building, and interesting… The floor above, where Rajan died is being razed. He was there in spirit, the thunder and lightening of existence.

I pedaled back to my house in Kumaripati through puddles and got wet. Cycling in Kathmandu City, what an experience!

Now, I look forward to cycling in China!
[1] From the ‘Gospel of Enoch’ (of the Ggnostics).

Saturday, May 21, 2005

The Daily Dose May 21 2005

Oh, father sun!
Oh, mother moon!
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Oh father sun!
Oh, mother moon!
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

(Chant to the full moon!)

The full moon in a couple of days, has me in her sway! It’s that time of the month. Expansion, energy, creation, destruction! Lord Shiva at work! The Indonesian Tsunami disaster last December 26th, sweeping away 300,000 lives, was on a full-moon day! It was one of the strongest in recorded history at 9.15 on the Richter Scale.

I tend to lay low during a rising moon! Mother will have her way with us! We are no contest for Nature! You go right ahead and lay out on that beach in Thailand, on a full moon! I’ll be dodging avalanches somewhere in the Himalaya.

When we’re cold, we want heat! When hot, we want cooler temperatures! The mother organism is constantly vibrating between extremes. That is what the Quan Yin says to me!

You need to listen to the Quan Yin (Female Buddha) in your head! Although not a physical sound. It’s like alternating current, and probably is! I can hear it now in my head. When that stops, we are no longer! This is the ‘silver thread,’ that when cut the body ceases to function, continuing it’s ‘vibration,’ in the never ending, never ending, that never began!

Again, the preceding is as close as we can get with words! I’m creating my universe at this very moment! I can tell you it’s a very nice universe too, filled with much joy, and all the opposites! But, if you dwell on ‘Positive, beneficial, and happy thoughts only!’ you will balance out the negative, and go on your merry way!

Get control of your mind! That’s the secret! Most people don’t even know there’s a mind to get control of!

Wake up from the dream you call ‘reality,’ it ain’t! In fact, it’s the ‘dream’ to wake up from! There’s a whole lot going on in the ‘world’ besides the mundane! And mundane, meaning of earth, is a very apt as a description of what I don’t want. As I am a ‘Dragon’ I tend to fly above!

I always beckon those I know, care about, come soar with me above the clouds, but generally speaking, they’re too afraid!

I didn’t have a chance! I was taken!

‘Row, row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream!’

Sunday, May 15, 2005

The Daily Dose May 14 2005

The Daily Dose May 14 2005

A man in New York City married himself! This in a Kathmandu newspaper. The Nepalese will have a hard time understanding this one! I think it’s cool, may start a new trend, create a demographic, and help the economy, reduce over population! Of course, the evangelical Christians will hate it!

In fact, I have done very nearly the same thing, but in a spiritual sense. But, I thought, how clever of this chap! A party and all! But, no mention of a honeymoon!

Of course, since this happened in very sophisticated Manhattan, it’s already being written as a screenplay for ‘Hollywood!’ At least a made-for-TV movie. A comedy of course, as there is a girlfriend, and how is she taking all of this? I mean what role does she play in the wedding? Possibly the wedding night? Of course, there has to be some naked flesh!

Where was I…?

Gosh I lead an interesting life! So many interesting people. Like I’ve been visiting Temba and Sharmila at Paten Hospital, where they just had a baby, a son! Wow! A simple thing to nature, but to see it in person is to give new respect to all women, all mothers! This is quite a deal! Note: I’ve attended live births before! And they wouldn’t let Temba anywhere near!

Temba had sent me an email message announcing. I went the next day with gifts! I feel like I’m the child’s ‘baje!’ We did a deal on his 35MM Canon camera. I traded the digital, plus made a commitment to rent his, buy it, or return it. In the meantime, welcome to the wonderful world of digitalia!

I remember one thing from the first visit. When we got to bed #228 in the ‘Maternity Ward,’ both Sharmila and her sister were fast asleep.

The next day Sharmila managed to smile. I knew she liked chocolate, so I bought two brownies from Fuji. Plus, something healthier, two apples. She looked pretty well, although exhausted. Gosh, this giving birth must take it out of you! And my mother gave birth four times! Some women give birth twenty times.

I can tell you that women are stronger than men in the ways that count: endurance, fortitude. Women tend to out live men. Why? Well, they come with a special hormone that makes them resilient. Men are like comets, women are like stars!

Where was I?

Beyond Our Wildest Dreams!

An old toothless woman spits
Across the street,
Square, perfect loaves of bread,
Uniformed children walk past!
I drink a green tea lassie,
While birds build nests!

I’m losing my life
From the day I was born,
Giving birth, dying
For the world!

Kathmanduites kough
Not wanting to ‘no!’
‘Ignorance is best for some,
Others beat the drum!
Others feel the pain,
‘Noing’ they were alive!

Beyond our wildest dreams!

Where was I?

Did I tell you I’ve been dealing with the Chinese visa situation? I finally get the letter go to the Chinese Embassy (the second time), only to discover that my invitation letter is only good for ‘Mainland China, ‘ not Tibet. Ke garne? Email Stephanie/Yue of course. I’m waiting to hear. But, now there is only two weeks before departure May 31st (Tuesday). Luckily the bus departs on this day, perfect timing as my Nepali visa runs out May 30th.… But, now waiting to hear… Stay tuned! Much to do, and I’m getting to the point I don’t like to rush so much! That’s why I plan ahead!

Where was I?

Stop Thinking!

‘Wee’ grow up
Thinking we’re the only
‘Wons,’
When ‘we’re’ really ‘too,’
Or
Three or
Four and more!

Stop Thinking!

Every thing
Which is nothing
Is within our grasp!
Loosen the rasp!

Stop Thinking!

Haven’t you noticed? I stopped years ago!

From Koughmandu, Napel

Beyond Our Wildest Dreams!

The Daily Dose May 10 2005

The Daily Dose May 10 2005

My life has become so wonderful, it’s like I’m living in a dream! I keep thinking I’ll wake up and the feeling will be gone!

The Jasmine trees are in bloom here in Kathmandu! You’ve heard of Jasmine tea, these are the trees. But, the blossoms, an electric violet color as I’ve never seen before—does my heart good to partake. And the aroma… turns smelly Kathmandu into sweetness—they should have a Jasmine Festival. Note: They have many festivals in Nepal, but all have to do with religion/family! Think it’s time to have a few secular festivals in Nepal. One moment I’m smelling the stench of the Bagmati River, the next a heavenly flower!

The contrasts in Nepal are too numerous and too stark. You have to come and see/hear to understand!

Yesterday, I finally got to a dentist (Dr. Iswari Nepal)! Oh yea and yeah! It’s been six years since the last cleaning, and you can only imagine the ‘dirty’ feeling (plus the yellow color).

I didn’t get to attend to such until now as I couldn’t afford American dentists. In addition, in my opinion they charge outrageous fees, and Americans just go along (like sheep). Not me! My teeth cleaning (two appointments) here in Kathmandu will cost 1KNrs. Or $13U.S. Not only that, but the dentist, a woman with 30-year’s experience and all the latest equipment (ultra sound, etc.). She was brilliant, and I never felt one pain (as she had to wrench some of the 5-year old plak off)! Yet, another thing taken care of, my teeth.

And here’s some, not-so-good news to all of those American dental patients that had root canals! I never did, as I could never understand why I should pay so much for all that pain! Turns out, I was right not to have a one of those ‘procedures,’ doctors call such! I had a discussion with an American friend here, a middle-aged woman from New York City whose will go unnamed. According to her, her dentist told her that having had a root canal is not a good thing. That somehow ‘it’ has to be undone (more pain). Note: I wish some reader would verify this claim…? Are root canals somehow the cause of many other dental problems? Have American dentists been duping patients into spending on root canals (they knew are dangerous)? Any dentists out there?

I really believe like the indigenous groups of the Artic Circle. When they lost all their teeth, it was ‘time to go.’ So, they would walk out into the tundra and die!

We need to learn how to die better, and that means not hooked up to a bunch of machines, and drugged to unconsciousness! I want to experience whatever!

Now, if I can only fix my left ear! Right now I’ve got a clove of garlic (lasun in Nepali) in it! I’ve tried everything else, short of spending thousands of rupees. But, just recently a ‘light’ went off in my mind, and I remember this is how I cured the other one, with a clove of garlic. Here I’ve been suffering from this for months now. You would think we would have figured it out. Which only goes to prove, ‘spiritual time.’ Things ‘happen’ when they’re suppose to, not because we want.

I’ve been trying to tell doctors (Shivakotee and Pokharel), but this ear problem seems to confound everyone. What I need is an ear coning (via Jan Gaverick), but this is one thing that can’t be done by Internet (virtually). I even thought of having someone here in Kathmandu blow smoke into my ear! But, who and how to explain?

Yesterday I went to Thamel (the tourist district) looking for some winter clothing for Tibet. I will go from summer to winter in three days (going up to Tibet). Here it is a balmy 80F. while at 13,000ft (3800 meters), something like 40F. maybe. The challenge, in terms of clothing in Tibet, is the range of temperatures. Standing in the sun in the afternoon it may be 45C. In the early morning it might have dropped as low as -10C.

I found some trekking pants for 700Nrs. / $10. In the U.S. these would cost roughly $125. or at least 10X as much. It’s the difference between the real ‘Mountain Hardwear,’ and the Nepali version.

That’s the good news, things cost less in Nepal. But, also salaries are very low to balance. So, it’s not what you make or what you spend, but your relative happiness (index) in whatever culture you live. We always (everywhere) don’t have ‘enough!’

I could barely afford the U.S. I couldn’t afford Europe! I have been able to afford Nepal, giving away at least 10%. I will be able to afford China, although more expensive than Nepal.

Today I went to the ‘China Town Shopping Mall,’ thinking it was Chinese. Of course not, it’s a bunch of Nepali store owners using the name to attract. But, this cleverly done western style mall all together in the same building with parking in the basement. I found a backpack for Rajesh for 350Nrs. / $5U.S. of good quality. This would cost about $50 in the U.S., or 7X as much.

Come to find out Rajesh was there waiting at 1P.M., and I just getting ready to leave Kumaripati (where my house is located). Thus, I didn’t get there until 130P.M., and he had gone by then. I apologized, as this is not like me to not show or call ahead. But, sometimes youth must defer to age!

The Daily Dose May 8 2005

‘Pilgrimage to Mt. Kailas’ / On the Red Road for Peace!
By F.A. Hutchison
(Kathmandu, Nepal)

‘Oh, those memories I left behind!’ (Enya)

I’ve been in Nepal, this time, almost eight months, hosted by my close Nepali friends Dr. C.M. Yogi / Hindu Vidyapeeth Schools, Subodh Gautam, and P.B. Thapa. But, by the end of May, we’ll be up in Tibet on the way to Mt. Kailas, roughly 1000KM northwest of Kathmandu.

It’s taken roughly 650 days to travel from Colorado, USA to Kathmandu, Nepal, half way around the world (12,000 miles / 20,000KM)! But, an old man on a bicycle is in no particular hurry, as he knows the journey is the destination!

Cycling peace is what we’re all about. Talking about it, talking about the concept of consciousness, and how we believe peace is such, and thus the need to raise awareness and understanding. We also talk about the simplest, yet most powerful energy in existence, love! I travel to foreign countries to demonstrate that not all Americans are ‘gun-toting Dirty Harrys!’

By the way, text and images of our ‘Pilgrimage to Mt. Kailas’ is available via a WEB site: www.cyclingpeace.org This first ‘leg,’ entitled, ‘Colorado Springs to Sierra Blanca.’

In order to travel a bicycle, it must be packed (at least in the western world). Before departing Colorado Springs, my friend Brian Gravestock took special pains to pack my bicycle. If you’re ever in Colorado Springs, visit Brian’s Bicycle Repair, in an old warehouse adjacent the RR tracks downtown (‘Centrum’).

The first ‘phase’ of the journey was ‘Colorado Springs, to Sierra Blanca,’ Colorado, June, 2003. This first part wasn’t a long trip in terms of miles (in U.S. – 1 mile = 1.6KM), the distance from Colorado Springs to Sierra Blanca something like 300 miles / 500 kilometers roundtrip. But, it was arduous with my heavily loaded, wide-tires bicycle having to negotiate the mountainous terrain.

The second ‘leg’ / ‘phase’ of the Pilgrimage began in January 04, when I took the bus from Colorado Springs to Minneapolis, Minnesota (to fly to Iceland and Norway).

In Minneapolis, I was picked up by Rajan Devkota, the first Nepali person I ever met (via the Internet in 1997). He is a successful software engineer with American Softcom in Minneapolis. He drove me to his house where his new wife had dahl bhat waiting for us. Then he took me to the airport for my flight to Norway. I would be another eight months before I would eat dhal bhat again (in Nepal).

After one freezing night in Reykjavik I was off to Oslo, Norway, to be met by an old friend living in Sweden. I spent the next two months with her and her children in Dalsland, Sweden. Sweden, the Swedes call the ‘land of lagum,’ or the land of ‘just right!’ And Sweden is pretty close to being ‘just right!’

I had always wanted to experience a winter in the northern climes, like in Sweden. Luckily, I missed the coldest artic winter on record (05), by one year (04). But, it was cold enough in 04 (coldest –25C.). I think I cycled in –17C.

Then 2 April 04, I struck out for Utrecht, The Netherlands, some 1300 kilometers / 800 miles south. It would have been no problem except for the fact I had so little money. I think I departed with $65U.S. for a two-week trip (hardly enough).

Everything else was terribly expensive and honestly I don’t know how I would have made it without friends (guardian angels). I remember sending an ‘SOS’ message to my friend Jim Speer in Colorado Springs.

Halfway down the Jutland Peninsula in Denmark, it started to rain (fought the rain and wind most of the way south). This turned into snow outside a city called, Vyborg. By the time, I found a camping park in Vyborg , I was dead tired and wet to the bone. But, the camping site, just a piece of ground for my tent, cost $20U.S. and I said no thank you. I had just passed a hostel, and thought if I’m going to spend any money, might as well be for a place where I can dry out. But, I was concerned about the rate as I knew I didn’t have much in my bank accounts!

Sure enough one person in a room with two bunk beds cost $30U.S. But, when the clerk said there was a vacancy, I jumped on it! Oh, it was so nice to be inside, while it snowed beyond the windows. At these moments you say a silent prayer. I remember asking for help, as I gave her my bank card not knowing if the room charge would clear or not. I remember the first bank card was rejected. Then the other bank card I have was put to the test. The world stood still for a moment, as I waited for the little machine to bless me or not. I’ll never forget the sound of the machine printing out the charge slip! I almost fell on my knees my relief was so great! I wouldn’t have to sleep out in the snow. My friend Jim Speer had come through for me once again (by depositing money in my account, I think $100U.S.)!

I went to sleep listening to Enya and her ‘The Very Best Romantic Years!’ (nee ‘Oh, those memories I left behind!’) This was one of the best nights of my life—so happy to be comfortable in a warm bed!

I remember Denmark as a sea of windmills, wind, rain, mixed with the aroma of cow manure. I got lost many times in Denmark, but then always saved by the kindness of Danish strangers! Everywhere I turned there was a farm and farmers out plowing, as the season was just dawning.

I camped two nights (Easter weekend) in a fishing camp / resort parking lot (without paying). Then the following morning I crossed the border into Germany!

Outside of Husum, Germany, I got lost on a highway where I shouldn’t have been. So, I headed for ‘Zentrum.’ ‘Zentrum’ means ‘city center’ in German. ‘Centrum,’ means the same in Dutch, Swedish, and Danish.

Stuck next to a line of automobiles waiting for a light to change, I knocked on one driver’s window! It just so happened that I picked the right driver, a young man named Tim. Not only did he help, but he changed his entire day just for me! He was very frustrated he couldn’t speak better English, but I kept reassuring him I understood.

He took me the Central RR station in an attempt to find a map. Then when that didn’t work we went to the machines to check about a ticket (Note: You buy everything by machine in Europe.). I didn’t really understand as I had had no plans to take a passenger train. While we were figuring the possibilities a German woman named, Petra-Ulpts Lamping approached us. She offered a deal, basically a ticket to the town where I needed to spend the night. I was suspicious, however

Then while the three of us discussed my situation, another German woman walked up, and pressed $50U.S. cash into my hand (in Euros). I was overcome! In just a matter of moments all my problems had been solved. This German woman, who I’ve become friends with since, is named Rotraut Boyens. We have started together a fund to help travellers we call ‘The Loving-Kindness Fund!’

Not only did I get a ticket, cash, Petra diverted her return trip home so I would have a guide (she was concerned I wouldn’t get to where I was going). So, within hours of being lost outside of Husum, Germany, I was on a train with Petra, zooming through the countryside. I fell asleep as in a dream… this trip taking two hours (would have taken me all day on ‘My Fiets’).

I arrived in Utrecht, The Netherlands, on the 14th day (April 16, 2004), averaging almost 80 kilometers per day (from Rannelanda, Sweden). I can’t tell you how happy I was to see my host and friend Melvin de Vries and to ultimately meet his entire family!

Holland is ‘heaven,’ for cyclists! I call it the land of boats (canals) and bicycles! Not only are there thousands of kilometers of paved bicycle paths (complete with direction signs), you don’t have to go very far to find a bicycle shop. The Dutch understand bicycles like no other culture.

Melvin understands bicycles like no other Dutch person. We first went to his shop in Uinthoorn, where he’d worked at Huub Blom’s Tweewielers. Huub is a great guy, and very knowledgeable about two-wheelers! Additionally, he’s one of our sponsors as he compt’d all the work that Melvin did on my bicycle! If you’re ever in Uinthoorn, The Netherlands, a short distance from Schipol Airport, drop in and say ‘hello!’

My other ‘sponsor’ in The Netherlands, is the de Vries family: Erik, Petronella, Melvin, Christiaan, Fabian, and Hans! I believe them to be the quintessential western nuclear family, and in all the world! Had it not been for their generosity, I wouldn’t be in Nepal. But, then again if it hadn’t been for hundreds of people’s generosity I wouldn’t be here in Nepal either! And all their names I intend to invoke at Mt. Kailas.

I had originally planned to cycle to Moscow, Russia, via Finland. Then to take trains to Bishkek, Krygyzstan, as I had planned to climb Peak Lenin. The idea was to continue on into far west China and approaching Mt. Kailas from the west. But, plans do change. One of the best traits for a professional traveller is flexibility. What to do when things go wrong?

Then the idea of flying directly from Europe to Kathmandu, Nepal, came to me. The only problem again, the cost involved. But, then more guardian angels in the name of the people at Hindu Vidyapeeth School, namely Dr. C.M. Yogi. They agreed to loan me the money for part of the fare, which I would pay back while in Nepal.

Thus, ‘My Fiets,’ and I came to Nepal via Martin Air, and the United Arab Emirates.

On the flight from Amsterdam, Holland, to Sharaz, UAE, I slept most of the way (departed late in the evening). But, having a window seat I awoke to the desolate dessert of Iraq, backlit with the rising sun. The scene cast dusty waves of the war into my mind. Like, ‘down there,’ people are getting killed. People are suffering!

‘When will each person’s good, be everyone’s rule, and peace be like a shaft of light across the land?’

Waiting for me at Tribhuvan Airport was my dear friend Subodh Gautam (and his friend Thanka Pokharel). And thank God they’d had the patience to wait, as I was hours trying to get through customs!

If interested in joining us to Mt. Kailas, contact F.A. Hutchison via email: hutch@cyclingpeace.org In Kathmandu: 5553372

Sunday, May 08, 2005

The Daily Dose May 7 2005

The Daily Dose May 7 2005

I get to see Salma Hayek’s naked body, courtesy of WAVE Magazine in Kathmandu. Just what I wanted, right? Her sexy countenance saying, ‘So, if you want me, it’s going to cost you!’ I’ve never even heard of Salma Hayek, yet I’m intimate with her now. Some times things ‘come’ to you when you don’t even want them! Although, I did purchase WAVE Magazine, so I have to take what they dish out, like much naked female flesh. Which sells, right?

You have no idea, until you overcome it (consciousness), how much the exposed female body is used to sell things! Suggestive images are everywhere! And it’s particularly evident in the English-written publications in Kathmandu. This complete with all the gossip about show business celebrities. I know now more about Britney Spears than I ever wanted to!

My problem? I’ve worked with show business celebrities, and these are not the kind of people I prefer to hang out with! No thank you! I prefer the real people, preferably the kind I meet on the street. Give me a real person any day! I’ll take Muna over Britney any day!

In the evening I attend one of Subodh’s relatives’ birthday parties! I’m there early of course, which enables me to have a wonderful discussion with a 9-year old Nepali boy. I also meet and speak (in English) with a Russian woman. She’s lived in Nepal for fifteen years, but has never heard of Marina Donskaya. I’m not surprised, as Marina liked to remain ‘anonymous!’

I also meet the two journalists from ‘The Himalayan,’ I was supposed to… We discuss an article I’m to write about ‘Pilgrimage to Mt. Kailas.’ They give me their ‘visiting cards,’ with email addresses, and then I’m off to cook brown rice at home.

I’ve entitled the article about ‘Pilgrimage to Mt. Kailas,’ ‘The Best Dhal Bhat in Nepal!’

The Daily Dose May 6 2005

The Daily Dose May 6 2005 (Don’t the days just ‘fly’ by?)

What a life!’ as Marina would oft lament! I would counter with, ‘What a wonderful life!’ and that’s how I feel—it certainly is for me! I might get killed tomorrow, but just as well, as I’ve tasted the ‘beyond,’ and now have some clues! I’m ready to ‘shed the body,’ any time now. But, this is not up to me.

We try for this thing called ‘happiness,’ all our lives, like it has to me, you tend to be more thankful! One of my daily chants is, ‘Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Grateful! Grateful! Grateful!’ Mine life so ‘rich,’ as to tend to the ‘poor!’ What a wonderful life! And it has little to do with having ‘things!’

Materialism, now rampant in the world, is a commercial illusion, that most are trapped it (in fact don’t even know). I pray for them! And my prayer asks that they awake from the dream they call reality! It isn’t!

The week sped past and now it’s Friday afternoon, and the excuse to ‘kick back,’ and to do little.

On the other hand, it’s been raining like the monsoon. Sure looks like an early monsoon season to me, but the Nepalese resist. But, for me easy to believe when you understand global warming. There’s going to be much more rain, until someday some one is going to think, ‘Ark!’

I met three American tourists, this past week. One very unusually conscious, and the other two completely ‘in the dark.’ One by ‘accident,’ the other by introduction.

Rajesh and I had taken a taxi to meet two of the Americans at a fancy five-star hotel near the Boudha Stupa.

Outside the taxi windows the muck and suck of Kathmandu whizzed past. If you’ve not lived in a Third World country, please partake. There is a vibrant street life, and one I appreciate. But, sometimes it can be pretty ‘raw,’ literally, as while sipping my tea this morning and contemplating breakfast, outside Fuji’s window a bloody rear end of some carcass mit tail, dripped by on a bicycle. You will not see this kind of thing in CS. You will see in Kathmandu, where ‘the wildest dreams’…

While all this passes through my brain, on the taxi radio I hear American country/western music, and finally John Denver sings ‘Rocky Mountain High,’ ‘It’s raining fire in the sky!’ Sometimes these stark contrasts belie a movie I seem to be cast in! Entitled, ‘What a wonderful life!’

All my life I’ve been trying to produce a motion picture, only to find out at the end, that I’m the subject (lead character) in my own drama! And my name in the movie might just be ‘George!’

‘What a Wonderful Life!’ Even with all the pain, all the heart ache, all the scary, death-defying moments, all the bad and unconscious, with the Tao continually balancing all of it up! We have to except both extremes in Duality. Without pain, there can be no pleasure! Nirvana is in the middle!

We meet the two from CS, a doctor and his travelling companion. Two older retired Americans squeezing in the last bit of adventure (as they can afford it). But, they go so fast they miss most things, only superficially partaking of what’s offered. As they have their own agenda, nothing else fits their paradigm. This proves what Lord Buddha (Shakumani Gautama) said, ‘Your reality is created from your mind!’ Best to open it to all!

The doctor came with us, the companion stayed to rest, ‘exhausted.’ We took him to visit my Dr. Nita Pokharel, as he had kindly brought some vials I had suggested. Dr. Nita had asked me for help obtaining some vials, and I’m trying to provide her with some. This turned out to be very interesting as West met East. He, a regular allopathic medical doctor (Christian I’m sure), and she a homeopathist (Hindu).

I think she won him over, however, by giving him some remedies for abused children (his specialty).

We took the appropriate photographs, and sped on in the rain to Rato Ghar for dinner. He had nothing but U.S. currency, so I paid for all. He did give me $5U.S. / 350Nrs. Which paid for the ride home (twice as much as going, as returning we got caught in a jam).

Kathmandu traffic is madness! But, our guy managed an impossible U-turn right in the middle of it! Amazing! I gave him a good tip for getting us out of the mess—which I had caused by calling for the wrong route. You know you can get too big for your britches! This is when ‘Master,’ teaches us a lesson!

It’s all in overcoming the ‘I.’

Monday, May 02, 2005

The Daily Dose April 29 2005

The Daily Dose April 29 2005

Call me ‘Mr. Hutch,’ they do!

You know you’re living life when you can’t remember back 12 hours, what happened this morning. I can’t even remember what day it is, as these aren’t days but scenes from a movie I’m living (‘Beyond Our Wildest Dreams’) !

I go to the Clarion Hotel early to take a bath. Ah, what a wonderful bath turning the water black! You have no idea how dirty Kathmandu is, amazing. And this is not a new phenomenon. It goes all the way back to the 17th century with Capuchin Trappist monks first visited the Valley… They noticed it! But, back then it was only ‘clean’ dirt (dust). Today it’s a mixture of manmade pollution, and this monk dust!

In contrast, the women and children who dress in fresh light-colored clothing (women in flimy ‘kurtas,’ children in their school uniforms) everyday… How, I don’t know, considering no one (except the wealthy) use laundry machines. Plus, it’s just laid out on a bush to dry!

So clean freaks need not apply here in Kathmandu. Maybe 100 years ago. Then again, I don’t bath every day, as I’m not a clean freak. I think I’ve gone as long as two weeks here without bathing, worse I eat raw garlic! Ah, but all this helps keep the girls away, and that’s the plan, Stan! I’m a celibate Taoist monk!

But, I’m in no league with Karma Sherpa, my T.B. monk, friend… He is evangelic about Karma, Buddhism, Taoism, Nepal, history, and every other of the five languages he knows. This guy can’t stop talking. Thus, I feel the need… But, am I my Buddhist brother’s ‘keeper?’ I wrote him a letter, I’ve not sent. I’m wiser in my older age!

After my bath I go to R.G. for D.B. I sit in the shade of the lemon tree and read my Newsweek Magazine, and all about the scene in China.

Then Rajesh shows up, and I spend most of the day with him. He’s excited and can’t stop talking. I ‘wind these people up,’ then I can’t shut them up.

Nepal is a very verbal culture. It just doesn’t stop, the noise, the clatter, the chatter, the barking, the belching, the farting, the spitting. I’m reaching my limit with Nepali culture again. I can only take so much of the Kathmandu Valley.

We make telephone calls, I hang out my laundry. I do household chores basically, while trying to motivate Rajesh (who’s 24-years of age and wrestling with what to do and how to do it).

We finally go over to R.G. (Rato Ghar) to meet P.B. He’s come with his backpacking stove. My MSR stove, a fancy Dragonfly is inoperable after all of this time trying to fix it, make it work. But, I’m to blame as I basically ‘killed it!’ Yes, sometimes I’m ruthless with things! Anyway, I have a new stove that requires butane canisters. I shall go to Thamel tomorrow, Saturday and acquire a full one. But, P.B. warned me about buying a used one—one that’s rusty he said.

You have to be careful purchasing things in Kathmandu, the hustle is on (basically they’re desperate)!

Then P.B.’s off to purchase some books for one of his daughters, says he’ll meet us back at my house. He’s got something good to discuss, a possible social worker paying gig.

By the time Rajesh and I return with tato pani (hot water) in both thermos’ it starts to rain pretty hard. I was prescient and had brought my clothes in early. It rained hard and long starting about 330P.M. (1500 hours). And I swear it looks like the monsoon one month early (raining everyday in the afternoon/evening)!

The telephone rings and it’s P.B. explaining he couldn’t get the books locally, and has to go to New Road (in Kathmandu City), and can’t come to the house. We make plans for soon.

I’m dying to get rid of everyone so I can practice. Which I do. It’s wonderful to be alone. I’m not one of those that needs people around me all the time. I have the Spirit!

I write the letter Subodh has suggested, this in order to extend my Nepali visa. I alter my ‘bio data’ (resume) correcting the word, ‘aviary,’ to ‘apiary.’ I’m going in the bee keeping business here in western Nepal. But, not before I go to China.

Then what happens….?

Chodari comes to tell me in Nepali something about Rato Ghar… I figure out that there’s someone there waiting to see me. Turns out to be right, as ‘the American man’ is having dinner (in ‘Namaste! Hall’).

I meet Michael Dukes, a musician from Nashville in Nepal adopting a baby. But, before we can really talk we’re descended upon by Karma Sherpa and Subodh. Ke garne? I eat my boiled vegetables. I retreat to the house. Before, departing the scene, however, Michael make plans to get together the following evening (Saturday). I’m in the middle of my practice when I hear the doorbell. Perturbed, I open to discover Chodari and Karma. Karma, is here at Subodh’s suggestion (a place to sleep).

At this point I’m slightly pissed off being interrupted in the middle of my practice. I get Karma the sleeping pad and bag, and explain he’s to sleep in the living room. I also, explain about water, the kitchen, bathroom, being a half-assed host. He apologizes for coming unannounced. It isn’t only that, it’s the incessant talking, the assumptions, the ‘biting into the space,’ that has me perturbed. I shall have to have a talk with him, the letter I never sent!

I’m heading for bed, when Chodari rings the doorbell. Both Karma and I get up to open. Chodari wants to explain if we have any laundry, he’s our man! He’s discovered I pay well!

Many of the people in my life have been there to ‘take me to the limit’ (a test). Most of these ‘tests’ I’ve failed, at least in the beginning.

But, it’s where you end up, not where you begin (in life)!

And thus another typical day in the life of ‘Mr. Hutch’ in Kathmandu, on the Red Road for peace! Stay tuned!

‘Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all!’ Helen Keller

‘Mr. Hutch’ sitting in his house in Kathmandu…

P.S. You wouldn’t believe what I’m listening to in my ear at this very moment, Bach’s ‘Fugue in C Major!’ Quite possibly the greatest piece of music ever written (in my humble opinion). Although Bach’s ‘Toccata in F Major,’ and ‘Jesu, of Man’s Desiring,’ is a close second and third! Maybe Cat Steven’s ‘Foreigner Suite?’