Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Sunshine & Puppiness

Who am I? What am I doing on the planet?
Am I living the life I came here to live …?

I’m thinking about psytrance & psycho-puppies as I amble along, entranced in my Sillie Millie world. We walk a long path at least once a day, an enhanced insight into the world we live in. Every day is a new experience, as we explore the bushes and listen for the birds together, equally curious about the scuffling in the bushes, equally wary to go explore… she sniffs & I sigh at the fresh neon leaves blinging our brains in the bright morning sunlight, and keep an watchful eye out for the inevitable fresh dollops of multi-creature poop she always discovers just the second I turn my back!

From our earliest memories, we’ve been marinating in the mantra….
It’s the pursuit of happiness!

A few months ago, I found myself marinating in my mind…lost in my thoughts, always a million miles away from here & now, struggling to overcome horrific writer’s block, and general apathy. Nothing seemed to be going the way I had imagined things would be…and then, one night, we found Millie Mouse.

Millie Mouse attempts to usurp Fat Jimmy's throne

She bounces on the path beside me, the small frilly tail waving along like a little peace flag as her helicopter ears flap eagerly, ready to dive into the newest poop-pile as I revel in how she has revolutionized my world. Sure, I’m always tired, and sure, I’ve forgotten how many times I've sworn to myself that I’ll NEVER EVER have kids. I’d forgotten entirely how magical early mornings are, and I am grateful that I wake up to her puppy breath every morning when she dives headlong into my bed, excited that a new play day has begun. And when her naughty, button eyes glow in the setting sun, racing in the garden nipping fat, old Jimmy’s legs as she usurps his sand throne, she radiates pure pleasure to be alive.

And yet our mind is full of scheming, and worrying, and fretting….

As far as engaging with the everyday world is concerned, there is a deep void resonating in the recesses of my mind - at twenty-eight, I have very little material possessions. I don’t have a car, or a house, or a husband, or children, or a huge-digit salary, or any of what most of my peers are excited about and aspiring for. I own two ginormous cartons of books, a suitcase full of hand-me-down clothes (and a few bought for me by my parents in the hopes I could manage to look more ‘presentable’). My bank account has had the last laugh for this year.

And yet, here I am, lost along the long path, gazing at the hills all aglow in the setting sun The creeping fingers of dusk softens the blindingly gloriously green hill, bathing it with a gentle golden light, thick motes of evening sunshine creating dappled shadows onto the overgrown path. Thorns prick, and overhanging branches reach out their grasping twigs. My cotton pants rip a little more, silent spectator to all the scrambles through the bramble Millie Mouse & I enjoy so much.

 Love, Medicine & Natural Trance

Our world as we know it, is essentially a lie. The corporatization of love & life has broken us into tiny fragmented societies, divided by fake boundaries and imaginary lines on a map[1].  We are morbidly afraid of each other, and everything, and believe that the ultimate source of our happiness is money[2], and more money. As we discover new conspiracies of control, here are some things that helped me change my heart.

Our craniums are crammed with new thoughts, ideas and decisions on a daily basis, and given how caught up we are in the intricate webs of the internet, we forget how to express ourselves.

I read this list of resolutions we all ought to strive for in the year ahead, and guess what, I’m already there! A good beginning has been to put aside work & technology, and get out there & explore. My world has evolved ever since early morning walks became a routine. I say hi to Jimmy, Lassie, Handsome, Fetso, Puppy & WhatsUp while they play with Millie, and though I usually forget their humans’ names, the whole act of smiling hugely while saying ‘hi’ is a complete change from my usual surly disposition. And I promise you, these aint no fake smiles, I’m honestly happy to see them. The dogs exchange sniffs and discusses details of the latest lump of poo, running amok and over the hill, and the humans smile stupidly at the cuteness of it all. Evenings are spent gushing over Molly, Choti, Martha and Dylan (the human puppy who regularly sneaks into our yard to play with Millie). It is but natural that Love brings happiness.

Speaking of which, I’ve rediscovered that happiness is the best Medicine. I befriended a fitness freak, (yes, while discussing our dogs.) and he encouraged me to exercise with him. A few stretches on a regular basis really changed my disposition. Exercise brings an incredible strength and stamina, and the rush of oxygen is an excellent wake up call for our bodies. It automatically brings in a certain amount of dedicated discipline and happiness. 

we realize that happiness is found
in the present moment…

Being in Goa has given me much to be grateful for. I see the birds & bees, the sun through the trees. Having Millie around taught me to be alive. Millie has moved on to Carl & Noel’s place. She has Spasiba (a.k.a Papa Siba), Handsome Stranger & Loafer to play with, and a giant garden to sunbathe in. Taking her home was the right thing to do, but giving her away, was even better. Her humans all secretly cried, but Millie Mouse is happy, and that’s all that matters.

Millie sunbathing in her new home with Papa Siba & Loafer 

Carl & Noel's little princess 

This has been a year to be grateful for. Despite all the deaths, murders, rapes, hunger, starvation, riots, wars & tragedies, I am alive. I haven’t been homeless, hungry, afraid or alone. My family adores me, my friends bear with me, my colleagues care about me. It’s been an important year for me to know that while this world is busy being fucked up, there are many good souls out there. Some are friends, many were strangers. Collectively, they’ve brought on a wholly different dimension to my understanding of the ways of this world. I’ve learnt to dedicate myself to tasks I’ve chosen to do. Sure, I’m slow, and quite the languid soul. But dedication has brought in a lot of free time. Time to enjoy the tranquility of natural trance. I’ve learnt to say NO. I’ve learnt to refuse to do something if I didn’t want to. And I’ve learnt to accept things life as it is, and to change what I can. As I read, travel & meet people, I’ve learnt there are many out there who agree that simplicity is the key to break corporate monopolies & capitalist empires. My friend told me about a minimalist project she has undertaken, and another told me how he’s happy earning 1000INR a day. (He drives a cab here in Goa, and trust me, for him to make such a choice in tourist season, is a huge step.)

What’s been reinforced for me this year has been that money is inconsequential, and what really counts is everyday rebellion. As our world hurtles towards further insanity & destruction, we, who believe in the possibility of a different world must continue to fight for our rights. Our right to land, clean water, freedom, safety and the truth.

Oh Heart, lead the way to the Being within
~ Sarbakhepi (the Mad One), The Fakir

In the year ahead, my resolution is to follow my heart, pick the right sides to fight for, the right people to fight with. I will not be afraid, and nor will I worry. There is a lot of love & laughter right here with me, in the guise of all the friends & family I’ve acquired over the years, all the trance dancers who stomped their way into my heart, all the dissenters who taught me to dream different, and all the doggies who pranced their way into my heart, my home.

Thank you all for believing in me, for giving me the faith to carry on,
and for all the sunshine & puppiness. 

May our tribe increase.

Psst: there's some of you out there I don't have photos of...I still love you anyway.

[1] Captain Paul Watson, Sea Shepherd International.
[2] The Dalai Lama ~ “These days, in our materialistic culture, many people are led to believe that money is the ultimate source of happiness. Consequently, when they don’t have enough of it they feel let down…”


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