Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Same As It Ever Was

Phuket, Thailand.
In February, the dust settled just long enough for me to look around the tropical paradise of Phuket and ask myself how did I get here?

The last time I remember having some semblance of an idea as to what I was doing, I was in Rishikesh, India on the heels of a peaceful month at an ashram in the Himalayas. Out of the blue I was struck by what my Phuket neighbor Baz calls 'The Stalker Effect', and it goes something like this:[bxA]

Fiona Stalker wrote Ali Flint (11 November 2009, 2pm):

Tomorrow I'm flying out to KL and then heading down to Port Klang to meet the fleet for the Raja Muda regatta. That's a combination passage and day race regatta ending in Langkawi on Nov 21. What I suggest is this: you meet us in Langkawi on November 21 for the final party of the Raja Muda regatta. We are then spending a few leisurely days cruising up to Phuket and it is a gorgeous trip, really really lovely.

Once in Phuket we'll be racing the Kings Cup which runs Nov 28 - Dec 5 and is a day race regatta (back to the same place every afternoon) and has wicked good parties. Then I'm hanging out in Phuket through Christmas and New Years at Barry's place…you would be more than welcome to stay at Baz's place.

Back to the sailing: Sirius is a gorgeous old wooden schooner… full galley and comfortable bunks, heaps of room. Skipper will charge a small per diem … I think you'd be looking more around a max of $100 for the trip up (4 or 5 days) and I'm not too sure of the regatta fees but it ain't too crazy.

And then your costs in Phuket over Christmas will probably amount to buying Baz a bottle or two of wine. And maybe helping out with the Christmas pantomime (play) that the theatre group is involved in. I've volunteered to help paint sets etc.

If you're keen let me know asap.

Rishikesh, India - the road outside the internet cafe (November 2009)

Ali wrote Fiona (11 November 9):

okay, i'm gonna sleep on this. the 21st is a bit soon but i'll think about it. or, could i meet y'all closer to the 28th and sail with you then? i need to think...but it's doable. would be fun to get out of india and sail with you!

Rishikesh, India - Sign on the walk from Ram Jhula to Laxman Jhula (November 2009).

Fiona wrote Ali (12 November 6am):

No drama - you could meet us in Phuket anytime from the 28th onwards. The Kings Cup runs till the 5th.

Fiona wrote Ali (12 November 2009, 6:01AM):

But the sail up from Langkawi to Phuket is *really* nice.

Rishikesh, India (November 2009)

Ali wrote Fiona (13 November 2010, 1pm):

Okay, I want to meet you in langkawi on the 21st. I'm going to try to arrive on the 20th and have a day to prepare for the party;) I'm pricing tickets now. Do i need to have a round trip ticket to get into the country? Ugh! There is of course still a slim chance I won't make it, but I'm planning to book my ticket later today. Am waiting for one friend who I want to see while in India, but assuming his schedule fits mine, I'm on way! Are you sure it's okay with the captain if i sail with y'all to Phuket? Do i need to contact him? I'm so excited!!!!

Rishikesh, India - Swami Sivananda at the Sivananda Ashram (November 2009)

The plot then grew as thick as molasses.

Rishikesh, India - Mischievous monkeys along the Ganges River (November 2009)

You may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
You may find yourself in another part of the world
You may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
You may find yourself in a beautiful house with a beautiful wife
You may ask yourself, well, how did I get here?

- The Talking Heads, Once in a Lifetime


Nad said...

... and you may find yourself waiting for answers, for signs to show you the way to go
you may ask yourself, well, how do I get the answers?
... and eventually live with the idea that there might be no answers to why I'm here
and how did I get there
and decide to drop the question in the first place
and just go with the flow of life
or, as my Yoga teacher would say, "It's okay. You should not be attached to the idea of finding an answer. Just be present"
... just BE the answer!