Foraging ‘Wild’ Food in Maui

…As I was determined to acquire all my food from the wild, foraging was becoming quite time consuming. Regardless, it was fast becoming a thrill second to none. Gathering wild food made me feel dynamic. As the days went by I was discovering more and more food foraging options. There were several avocado trees scattered about the very land that I was staying on as well as two different types of green leaves. One with a spinachy taste and the other tasting lemony. On the three kilometer, mostly dirt road to the beach, and to an excellent fresh water swimming hole, known as Blue Pools, were several papaya trees that had sprung up from randomly scattered seeds. Along the way a gathering of robust trees played host to a seemingly endless vine of passion fruit. Every visit guaranteed a bag full. An area not far from the bathing pool boasted a very large patch of watercress, and other, more mild tasting greens. Guava trees could be found along any road or in any field. It was a magnificent situation that I had fallen into. I was now eating what I believed to be the best possible food of all. Completely wild growing and picked at full ripeness or retrieved from the ground, eaten immediately or shortly thereafter. I couldn’t do better than that.

Although I knew I’d yet to regain all my strength, there never seemed to be a shortage of energy when it came to foraging. Whether it would be walking several kilometers a day with a knapsack full of the day’s catch, climbing guava trees, or poking papayas down from sometimes twenty foot trees with a bamboo pole, I was undoubtedly ‘there’, in the fullest sense of the word. I couldn’t believe how such gifts of opportunity had been bestowed upon me. How I’d been plucked and flown across the Pacific Ocean in a metal bird to be dropped off on a fantasy island such as Maui, with its vast array of fruit trees, swaying coconut palms, gorgeous beaches, and flowers that filled the air with such a wonderful aroma, was something I never would have imagined possible. I could feel the power of life’s spiral of positive energy. Great things seemed to be manifesting one after the other.

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Hawaii
By Jimmy
October 23, 2010
Comments : 8
 
 

Living in the Mountains of Maui

…the next few days were spent building little doodads to improve my situation, one of which was a bamboo platform for the looha. The design involved tying several pieces of bamboo, each lying side by side, to two main pieces running perpendicular to the rest. Although I successfully completed the first of the two foot rests, I’d felt that I’d wasted a lot of string aimlessly wrapping each piece erratically around the cross beam and a back over the top and under and blah, blah, blah. I wanted an efficient technique for tying. Later that day, while I was practicing Meditation, I was suddenly blessed with a vision. I had an overhead view of myself tying the bamboo together in a much more efficient manner. Remembering what I’d seen, I tried it out and, yes, it worked perfectly!

After about a week at my new place I was really feeling good. Those wonderful, ‘hug my body’ sensations kept coming and coming throughout Yoga and the rest of the day. A warm glow emanating from my Heart outwards. After meals I was beginning once again, to feel really smooth as I had experienced In The Beginning, after eating spinach in the kitchen on St. Denis Street. This was something that had quietly left me as my strength diminished and weakness set in.

I’d done two twenty-four hour fasts since moving to my new place, both of which had much to offer. Although getting going early in the morning was tough on both occasions, once I set myself in motion the energy I experienced was phenomenal. I worked the entire day on both occasions, either foraging for food or blazing a new trail, the latter being a thrill I would never have imagined. I couldn’t believe the excitement of creating a path. Charting my own course through the mish mash of trees, bushes, and vines. Absolutely dynamic. Finding freshly fallen passionfruit on the trail the next morning was icing on the cake.

Throughout my first two weeks living on the mountainside it rained on and off, I would say, all day and everyday. The gentle showers at Sunrise were a special delight. The yellow gold rays lit up the rain as it fell upon the grass clearing in front of my home. This was it. This was beautiful.

However, as it pounded down on the tarps with tremendous force on some occasions it was downright terrifying. I imagined the outcome should one or more of the ropes or grommets give way. I’d be soaked in the middle of the night desperately trying to repair the situation. And with very little Sun light during the day throughout this period, how would anything possibly dry?

Although I was at least about fifteen meters away from a practically dry stream, my fears again had the best of me as I envisioned a flash flood from higher up in the mountain turning my campsite into a river. Considering the isolated nature of the showers, there was really no way of knowing how much or how long it had been raining at any given location.

But all fears were in vain, and I suffered neither of the catastrophes I had imagined.

One night however, while writing in my journal during yet another heavy rain shower, I felt the seat of my pants becoming wet. I turned around to see that the pathway that led to the outhouse, which was situated on slightly higher ground had become a canal of sorts and was now channeling the rainwater right into my home. With lightning speed I began digging small run off ditches along the pathway. This quickly solved the problem. There’s no such thing as laziness when something has to be done, is there?

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Hawaii
By Jimmy
October 8, 2010
Comments : 2
 
 

The Kingdom of Heaven Within

As Christmas 2000 was fast approaching I was about to begin what would become one of the most dramatic cleanses I’d ever experienced to date. As I was walking towards the washroom at the Phraharuthai evening Christmas party, held for students and parents alike, I did a little hop down a step and noticed an unpleasant sensation in the lower left area of my back. I hadn’t experienced anything like this since the more serious days of my back problems. I hopped on the same foot a couple of more times, just to test it. Sure enough there was something amiss. Because only recently the overnight temperatures had dropped quite sharply I assumed it had something to do with this, that is, the whole ‘changing of the seasons’ thing that Dr. Sullivan had told me about back in the ‘begging for Unemployment Benefits’ days.

The Holy Love of God Exists Within Concerning my back, nothing much happened over the next few days. But a bit after Christmas, on my way to third period, I took a pee. Nothing out of the ordinary. After the usual introductory ritual at the beginning of class I sat down in my chair to flip through the day’s lesson. Oh Heavenly Goodness Glory That Be. The most incredible sensation of Love came over me. I was enveloped in Beauty. Everything felt so right. The class was a roar of incredible enthusiasm. Mine was a face of delight. Rather than attempt to conduct the class on my own, I quickly asked the yet to be nicknamed, StarLight Wonder Girl, who was a student I felt to have an incredibly special energy about her, to come to the front of the class and ask the other students some of the questions from the text. She jumped at the opportunity. The vibration in the room was that of Super Light. As the StarLight Wonder Girl held the fort with a smile a mile wide, I sat in my chair in a state of euphoria practically rocking back and forth with my arms wrapped around my upper body. As the students were on a high themselves and paying closer attention to the temporary substitute teacher than to me, my movements, I assumed went unnoticed. The words ‘Oh, I Love myself’, ran through my head. This was it. This was the Garden of Eden like I’d never experienced it before. There I was dressed up in a tie, holding down a job in of all places, a school – a situation that I would normally have avoided like a plague. Yet at this moment living just felt so good. It didn’t matter where I was. This was the Kingdom of Heaven.

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Thailand
By Jimmy
September 30, 2010
Comments :1
 
 

Where is Benaulim, anyway!!!?

After a fairly normal night of sleep, by far the best since coming to India, I decided to head out to Betul by rented bicycle. After polishing off the first ten-kilometer stretch from Benaulim to Mobar in excellent time, followed by the ferryboat crossing into Betul, I asked around about the ‘secluded idyllic beach’ that I had read about and was told it was four kilometers down the road.

After covering what seemed like roughly four K’s, which included a very steep incline at which point my left knee began to speak to me, I spoke with a woman who was walking by the road in the middle of an area that most people would liken to ‘nowhere’. She assured me that the beach lay ahead. Just follow the road for another ten to fifteen minutes. That’s odd, I thought. The book had said it was a half-hour’s walk from Betul. I was beginning to think that perhaps I’d missed the beach that the book had written of and was being directed to another. Oh well. I continued riding on what felt like a raised plateau. I eagerly awaited the drop in altitude that would take me down to the Sea.

Finally it came. I descended into a more humid and jungle-like atmosphere. The beach couldn’t be far now. Unfortunately, the road began to climb back up. The outside of my left knee was really beginning to act up, forcing me to walk the bike. After a painful uphill hike I found myself on the plateau once again. No beach. The landscape was burnt and dry. I was feeling more like I was in Spain than in India. Onward I biked. After riding for at least another ten minutes I stopped to speak with a woman who was waiting at a bus stop. Like the first person, she assured me that the beach lay ahead. Just keep biking in the same direction, she motioned.

With the Sun climbing ever so close to its peak in the sky, across the parched plateau I continued. Now my knee was hurting all the time. But on the flat the pain was minimal so I just cycled at an easy gentle pace, all the while telling myself that the pain was not real, or at the very least, that it was insignificant. I believed that the time I had was as good or bad as I would make it. The knee situation could be made irrelevant by the right frame of mind. (more…)

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India
By Jimmy
September 15, 2010
Comments : 2
 
 

India – Gentle to the Touch

The Mountains of India - Beyond Beauty…such striking Beauty.

The huge boulders that decorated the cove in front of my hut offered a front row center seat for watching the setting Sun. As if I’d not been dazzled enough for one day, the Sun threw out its brilliant colours of wine, red and purple as it dropped out of sight. I was loving India!

The next two days were spent exploring the surrounding area. It’s beaches, rivers, hills and sandy flat-lands were all so special and easily accessible with footpaths leading everywhere. So much more so than in any of the other countries I’d seen, walking was a popular form of transport in India. Tens and tens of people could be seen doing the three-kilometer walk from the village to the town market every day.

On the morning of the Full Moon I awoke with a trip to the toilet much needed. This had been the case for the last two days as well. But what left me that day dwarfed the others by comparison. Much bigger than any BM that came first thing upon rising, before the daily watermelon flush.

I laid back in bed for Pranayama. It felt so good and I waited several minutes before beginning my breathing routine. I felt such Light.

After Yoga I decided to have breakfast on the beach. Upon finishing, the toilet called once again. Although not very sizable, this release was rather foul smelling. Immediately it was obvious something of significance had left me. I felt very good.

Finishing up I headed into my hut. That’s when it hit. The feeling was tremendous. I felt to do nothing but pick up a sarong and sit by the Sea. I sat cross-legged feeling super. I don’t know if I could say that my body had ever felt so good. Description is difficult. When I was very young my favorite little toy was a small stuffed rabbit. In hindsight, that morning I think I felt similar to how it felt to touch and hold this bunny in my hands. So beautiful was this sensation that I felt that morning. Warm and soft. Gentle to the touch.

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India
By Jimmy
August 30, 2010
Comments : 0