Sunday, March 22, 2009

High in Afghanistan, Wild in America

Spirits In and Out of Bottles
On my worldwide odyssey many years ago, I was stopped in my tracks in Kabul, Afghanistan. There was an international traveling group comprised of all sorts of fascinating characters, among them a collection of Italian actors and movie-makers. Their warmth was infectious and the crowd quickly gathered around them, sparking, laughing, feuding, loving, and living together communally sharing all the money.
For one month I stayed, enchanted, with many memorable nights in the garden, the hotel gardener and maintenance man managing the hooka. He always excitedly warned us against Scorpions, calling them something like, gargedoons.
Then an empty bottle appeared.
It was supposed to have been previously filled with LSD, a popular recreation of the time, and water was added. Many of the group took a swig and entered an imaginary world hitherto unknown. For months, water was added continuously and the tiny receptacle kept giving.


"Nothing will happen," they reassured the unwitting recipients.
They really did think nothing would. The Afghani government generously supplied its national gardens for the travelers' amusements, and they were lovely.

We finally decided to pile into the Italians' VW bus and head for the hills of Pakistan. What a trip, with this noisy animated company of players! During the climb we encountered the unique moment in Kafiristan I told you about earlier.
My favorite was Alfonso, a tall, skinny redhead, who spoke no English. He did manage a little fractured French, and with my high school knowledge, we developed a surprisingly talkative relationship. I remember one night in Pakistan having a deep philosophical discussion about "la crise," one of many this crew always had.
These memories stay with me always, and sometimes I go through patches where the people around me are a little dull. Not so right now. I feel I've re-discovered the lost jubilation of my old thespians, artists, and all assorted creative, animated, troublesome, gregarious, outspoken people. A stage for the living in all their shades and variations.
I love Leo for it's acting nature, but I think most of all, I go for Pisces -- the creature who does it for IT, not for them. Lost in imagination, spirit unbottled.

4 Comments:

OpenID ancareth-raven said...

Lost in imagination, spirit unbottled.

I love that statement. Makes me so proud of my Pisces Moon, just want to lurk and lurk there! And unbottle all my treasures!!! <3

22/3/09 3:57 PM  
Blogger m.p.k. said...

I feel I've re-discovered the lost jubilation of my old thespians, artists, and all assorted creative, animated, troublesome, gregarious, outspoken people. A stage for the living in all their shades and variations.

This is what I miss most of all right now.

22/3/09 6:45 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Pisces Moon gets carte blanche to unbottle and get lost!

Mpk, your description of your friends in the restaurant really reminded me. I've mostly had this kind of group when we were free and not overdoing making money, acquiring everything, and all of that. Dedicated travelers, I think, get into this creative mode more easily being free of those attachments.

I want to re-create it in my town and I don't know if it's possible, but I suppose it's up to me now to pull it together. I've been planning to get active in the acting and dance community, so I hope it pans out.

The international traveling group back then was famous in Europe it was so lively. We traveled from town to town and country to country, meeting up in each place. It was like we all assumed our positions and knew just what to do to carry on our magic when we arrived. I knew unforgettable people then, but it was a unique time. I'm glad it happened. I will find them again in a new form. Living theater is vital.

22/3/09 8:04 PM  
Blogger m.p.k said...

This group with changing cast is always there. I find it whenever I have the time and the mind for it. It's a magnetic draw. I haven't tried since I was married though. I'll see if I can still find it as easily when the time comes.

23/3/09 8:25 AM  

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