July 2008

Some scraps from this week’s reading

“Indecisiveness, capriciousness–these qualities in Rema never irritated me. I’ve always thought of my own mind as an unruly parliament, with a feeble leader, with crazy extremist factions, and so I don’t look down on others for being the same. Maybe that’s what ‘our humanity’ means. My mother was like this also: often she’d run bathwater, set the kettle for tea, and go out for a walk nearly all at once…” 

“My heart always goes out to beautiful people, which I realize really isn’t fair, but at least my heart goes somewhere.”

– Rivka Galchen, Atmospheric Disturbances

 

“…Anna is not aware that the casualness in Rafael she witnesses is inconsistent with his nature (save for the territorial precision with which he flicked that bee off his guitar in her presence a few days earlier), while he knows scarcely a thing about her. Who is she? This woman who has led him into this medicine cabinet of a room where most of her possessions exist–books, journals, passport, a carefully folded map, archival tapes, even the soap she has brought with her from her other world. As if this orderly collection of things is what she is. So we fall in love with ghosts.”

– Michael Ondaatje, Divisadero

other people's words

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Old men at a funeral procession

Almolonga, Guatemala, 2008

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Street in Quetzaltenango

Quetzaltenango, Guatemala, 2008

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On the road to Xela

I’m in Guatemala on an exploration trip. There will be projects in the future, but for now we’re just trying to find out what’s going on.

After an overnight flight to Guatemala City, I made my way across town to a bus headed to Quetzaltenango. Then I got lucky to find a seat in the back — right next to the bathroom, not always a good strategy, but in this case great as I had a window (that could be opened) as we bounced our way 5 hours through the mountains.

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