moodswings and roundabouts

When Mood Music
2006-04-06 23:09:00

The following blog entry is meant as a snapshot of yesterday, not an on-going state of affairs. I wrote it last night (6th April) by hand and am this morning keying it into my blog mostly for completeness (but didn’t make it public until the evening of Saturday 8th).

I’ve been in a fairly foul mood on and off since I bathed my cellphone last night. Here’s most of the reasons:

Zeroth law of computing
I’ve lost all the numbers on that phone, including those of people I’ve met here and not recorded elsewhere. I can only recall five of the UK numbers on the phone so please email me your numbers if you want to risk me calling you.

Platform prostration
Oh yes, on the subject of backups: trying to upload my pix so far to my iDisk from a cybercafe PC has been, er, unsuccessful so far… I don’t really want to keep on buring to CD-R so will look into getting a couple of decent-sized memory sticks.

It’s in the trees, it’s coming
The non-arrival of a parcel I posted from Pune’s main post office to my parents on 24th March has been gnawing at me for over a week. So I checked with the local post office on how to chase it up. Apparently I had to write to the Postmaster at Pune and pray he’d take action, then email me (because I don’t have a postal address he can reply to in India). I spent a while writing a suitably grovelling letter, buying envelopes, etc.

However, when I phoned home just now, I was told that this parcel had arrived, along with one of the three I’d posted to the UK from Mahabaleshwar on the 31st March. So there’s hope for the other two and for the Indian postal system yet.

Ashes to Ashes
England lost yesterday – again and now have no chance of winning the ODI series. While I always want Australia to beat England and I’m happy for my host country to defeat the poms too, I’d like it to be a close thing, not a whitewash. Here’s hoping more of the first-choice English players recover from injury soon. However, I still applaud those who have played: playing to even a fraction of your temperate-climate ability here is impressive. It’s hot and humid enough just now for sweat to be constantly trickling down my back and abdomen, even well past midnight.

Clunk-click
Until a few hours ago, I thought one copy of my padlock key might have been stolen. So I was worried by this apparent loss/theft and am now annoyed with myself for not checking thoroughly before starting to worry. (All the hotels I’ve stayed in have locally-produced padlocks on their doors. To prevent theft by staff or previous inmates, I use my own [Indian made] padlock, then padlock my rucsac shut and to the furniture with a combination lock and chain I brought from the UK. I can’t help feeling that I’m being over-cautious.)

Sunshine on Leith?
One disadvantage of not wearing socks under my sandals is that they’ve chafed my feet. I bought a pair of-flip-flops last night but I just couldn’t live with the hard vertical plastic violating my tender parts (between my first and second toes) so I’ve given them to a local charity store and started wearing socks again.

People are strange, when you’re a stranger
There’s bugger-all to do in Colva except eat, drink and read, unless you have company. Probably because the locals have already met loads of foreigners, until 10pm this evening I’d not even had a snippet of a meaningful or enjoyable conversation all day. (As if prove how silly this worry is, I’ve today [Friday 7th], met a Slovakian architecture student and we’ve been nattering away in French with the occasional lapse into English or German where there are lapses in our vocabularies.)

I hate the white man?
However the main reasons I’ve been a foul mood this evening is meeting a very unsavoury character (my first entirely dislikable Indian) last night. I’m not going to say any more about this in this forum apart from that the only tangible cost (and all that really happened) was drinking a beer I didn’t really want and buying him a brandy-and-coke (after steering him to a bar so that there were other people around and so it was less likely that he could do anything to me). The intangible cost? Probably almost nothing apart from yet another smidgeon of my self-respect and that’s now returning.

Le mot juste?
Mr Cash’s words seemed to be relevant – well they were going round my head all day:
I hurt myself today
to see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
the only thing that’s real
the needle tears a hole
the old familiar sting
try to kill it all away
but I remember everything
what have I become?
[snip]
and you could have it all
my empire of dirt

I will let you down
I will make you hurt

I wear this crown of thorns
upon my liar’s chair
full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
beneath the stains of time
the feelings disappear
you are someone else
I am still right here

what have I become?
[snip]
and you could have it all
my empire of dirt

I will let you down
I will make you hurt

if I could start again
a million miles away
I would keep myself
I would find a way

In this case both the ‘you’ and ‘I’ are (mostly) me. I’ve deliberately omitted lines which might appear to be intended to hurt or implicate people who might read this blog because they’re NOT so intended. If you look up the missing lyrics, please please please don’t take them personally. If anyone has ‘gone away’, then this is at least partly my fault for pissing them off or not (yet) responding to their attempts to contact me.

Remergence
This evening, I met acousin of the cyber-cafe owner outside the cafe and found that the overlap between her languages (Sao Paulo-accented Portuguese and some Konkani) and mine (English, French, a little German and the very little Latin I can remember) wasn’t enough to express much more than our common humanity and how cute the antics of her 10-month-old sister were. However, this human contact, along with the nocturnal visitation I’ve already blogged about, did much to alleviate the mood.

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