Tobago

Tobago
Horizon at Sandy Point

Sunday, February 16, 2014

meanwhile on this side of the world

Sun's glow before daybreak

The sun's early ray over the east scarp and through the trees throws light in the room. It's time to wake. Get out of bed. Shuffle downstairs. Dogs already yipping at the back. Give us our breakfast they say. But they wait. Today is Panorama Sunday: from east, south and north, converging on the savannah! I'll catch all on tv, a parallel reality. Later I will go out for papers and to check for mail at the p.o. box. Check my email first. Make a bread batter and set to rise.

Sunlit window
Humming birds attacking the feeders - they must be hungry from the overnight fast - before disappearing in the heat of the day. The sun is high now oranging the vermilion head of the immortelles where there's a racket of oropendolas, a few parrots and many smaller birds.  I think, I should do the Great Backyard Bird Count (http://gbbc.birdcount.org/) but so many birds are unnameable - I haven't learned the vocabulary beyond hummingbird, blue jay, oropendola, corbeau, tanager ...

The girl on the other side of the world has sent a message. Sunday's already gone for her. She's going to bed. It's sweltering in the Australian summer. She's thinking about furnishing two rooms. She's pleased to have fresh vegetables so she can start cooking. When I sleep, she will be going into Monday.

The son is four hours ahead - he'll be having lunch when I am breakfasting - and ten hours behind her. The man chilling in the foothills of the Alps near the south coast of France is one hour ahead of the son and nine hours behind the girl. What's the riddle? Shuttling between time zones, how many parallel realities can you bear?

Are parallel realities like trees growing in the same area?

The question is this: can you step in the same river twice? Can you ever return to the same place across the ocean of time? Who will be there to welcome you? Parents outgrow their parenting and you must learn a relationship that you never had. It feels as if you were jettisoned too long ago; the drift is too far, the separation too deep. The landscape seems the same, but the trees are all grown or gone. How to navigate what's there, what's not there.

I fall asleep some nights to Simon and Garfunkel's ageless "Sound of Silence" or "Bridge over Troubled Waters." This is calming when the valley is silent, the moon high and the temperature has dropped to a pleasant 22. Some weekends though, I go to sleep to the din and inanity of a DJ in a bar in Cantaro. The shape of the valley funnels sound straight to my ears skipping those sleepers on the flat level with the village. Nothing stops my sleeping though - never miss the dreamtime.

My mind is hop skipping the stratosphere, bouncing off the moon at the best of times. It's possible you know to time travel even while you are awake. For a second or two people think you are aloof, not seeing them, preoccupied. But you've gone where they cannot follow. I used to read about astral travel and be disappointed that I never found the technique or time; both have come lately.

To sleep again, perchance to dream... until fore day morning come

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