Jun 28, 2010

Desiderata Psytrance Festival

Driving on the country roads in the shadows of big huge mountains, once again, we found a most delightful, enchanted spot for a little bath. Look at this gorgeousness:

After refreshing here, we continued our way to a psytrance, art and yoga festival called Desiderata. Desiderata is latin and means desired things. It is also a poem by Max Ehrmann, and in preparation for the festival, I made a little poster on a paper bag with the ending of the poem (which is my favorite part).

I got to display this recycled piece of wisdom in the Temple of Healing our friends Sri Kala, Aloka and the whole Brooklyn crew set up. They had awesome big pillows to sit on, all kinds of instruments to get lost in during the nightly kirtanas, meditation and healing sessions, and all your general spirit-centered goodness. The kirtana definitely got wild and super duper jubilant, too bad I didn’t think to record any. But I took a picture of the Eastern Altar I decorated with all my precious finds such as colorful strings, shells, pictures and crystals.

Here’s the Rata Stage, in the early morning with not too many dancers awake and grooving:

I hooped with this hoop selling chick whose name I forgot (note to self: I have to pay attention to remembering people’s names more).

This creative soul painted a pastel dream, hung on the Green Bus. Philip gave these guys some advice on how to make their bus run smoothly on waste veggie oil.

I stumbled upon a Medusa Tree:

Here is a list of things I desire:
- diving deeper during my daily meditation
- writing more poetry (I just wrote something yesterday, will post here when it's completely done)
- figuring out how to get our books to bookstores and approaching appropriate people about it
- rapid increase in the awareness of human beings
- time to make more OmFalls
- light blue/dark blue piece of clothing
- an inspiration for the topic of July's Krishna Path newsletter I'm going to write soon
- sparkly bindis
- world peace
- closing of all slaughterhouses (this is also a prerequisite for world peace as far as karma goes)
- lunch :)

This list-making serves as a pretty good way to unravel and breathe some sense into all the Stuff that fills the mind. Happy Monday and have a fantastic week everybody!

Jun 16, 2010

Recent Festivals, Groundscores and Flying Frogs

One dark night not too long ago I drove up and down the picturesque mountain roads of upstate New York with narrow lanes, crazy drops and one tired, drowsy brain. I was chewing on carrots and blasting some hardcore psychedelic trance to keep me alert and awake. Philip was fast asleep in the back of the van. As the story of my life goes, at least after having moved here to the USA, bright red and blue lights filled the darkness as the cops pulled me over. Shiny lights were shoved into my face and an officer inquired whether something will jump out from behind my seat to bite him. I don't know how he had such an idea but I said he had nothing to worry about. Next he asked me if I had any drugs in the vehicle. I told him I don't even drink coffee, I'm about as straight edge as they come. He looked relieved and smiled, said he doesn't drink coffee either. After this friendly bonding over our non-ing (yep I just made up that word) he wished me a safe drive, and he and his partner left. 
Next day I sat in front of the entrance to Mountain Jam Festival with a sympathetic yellow piece of paper that I had scribbled on: “I NEED A TICKET.” Low and behold, I talked a while with a kind engineer who basically donated a full weekend ticket to me. Our deal was that he would come to have lunch with us the next day - sadly Mr. Jeff never appeared for the Amazing Lunch I conceived with all types of ingredients that I could scrape up from our mobile kitchen storages. Here’s the menu:

Here’s me rocking it out to whoever was playing at the moment.

Oh, and by the way, in my last post you saw Philip's statement-filled laptop. Well I picked up some cool stickers and pimped my laptop as well. Check this out:

Last weekend destiny and determination took us happily to Bonnaroo, Tennessee, where we passed out a bunch of books to the fellow festival goers. Luckily our van broke down just at the right moment, as soon as we had parked in the perfect spot under a shade-providing tree at the camp site. Take a look at these happy campers:

Caught a beautiful sunset as the storm approached:

If anyone doesn't know what groundscoring is, let me tell you that after a camping festival people leave all kinds of stuff behind. When you find these exciting items, they are called groundscores. So after 100 000 or so attendants of Bonnaroo left on Monday morning, I typically walked around in the scorching heat and picked up some magnificently useful groundscores, for example:
- paper plates, cups
- two super comfortable folding chairs
- a folding table
- box of vegetables and fruits
- conveniently unopened huge bags of chips
- a beautiful red tambourine
- clothes for hubby
- tarps for a farmer friend
- a big red inflatable parrot
- 3 pairs of new sandals, one pair has shiny mirror silver decorations
- a gorgeous wrapped crystal jewellery (!!)
- money
- kaleidoscope laser pointer
- 3 pairs of flurry pink rabbit ears with flashing lights inside
etc. etc.

I also collected one box full of colorful cute girly and crafty things that I can use for a future project that has started manifesting in my mind. More about that later, for the time being we'll call it a sEcReT.

Last Sunday, during Bonnaroo, I was sitting in the van and heard a sudden thump on the roof. I thought maybe some dude or dudette in multifarious altered states of mind (which was obviously not a scarce phenomena there) threw something on it and went out to take a look. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw a medium size, grayish Frog sitting on the top of the van. He had fallen from the sky. Apparently a bird dropped him, unless and until someone can think of a more sound explanation. Here he had already jumped down on the windshield.

All in all, great adventures, and more await. Right now we are in Virginia, figuring out our next direction. It's so hot and humid, I can't think much farther than some nice cool creek nearby that I could just go and soak in for a long time.

My favorite summer quotes:

Russel Baker: Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it. 
Albert Camus: In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer. 
Bhagavad-gita: O son of Kunti, the nonpermanent appearance of happiness and distress, and their disappearance in due course, are like the appearance and disappearance of winter and summer seasons. They arise from sense perception, O scion of Bharata, and one must learn to tolerate them without being disturbed. 
Celia Thaxter: There shall be eternal summer in the grateful heart.

Jun 2, 2010

V for Vegetarian

Today at the National Mall, Washington DC, I met a delightful bunch of PETA girls, giving out brochures and talking with the passers-by. They had a dramatic display called Modern Dining with wax images of famous vegetarians, such as Paul McCartney, Gandhi and Albert Einstein.

On the other side they had windows into the ghastly realities of slaughter.

I grabbed a bunch of pro-veggie stickers and Philip thanked the girls for being out there and for doing what they’re doing. As we travel and pass out our books, Bhagavad-gita and many others, although rewarding, it’s not always easy to impose an anti-mainstream idea on sometimes unthankful audience, and even small encouragement goes a long way.

Here is Philip’s laptop, I’m going to do something similar. But I’m still waiting for my magnificent center piece sticker, perhaps a hooping or mantra one, not sure yet!

Vibrant, huh?  :D