Postcards from the Bleeding Edge
Wednesday, August 26, 2009

  Beach calm #1

The day I published my last blog, I'd made my top priority finding a new house to live in.

I got up early to go to La Playa Yanqui. There, I met Alan, the proprietor of a B&B there, and we had a lovely discussion about just about everything... just him, me, and his dog, on that beach, by ourselves, shortly after dawn.

He mentioned that his neighbor's house was up for rent in September.

I got a nice surfing session in. The water was clear and warm. The waves were small and otherwise empty of other people. There were a few jellyfish, but they didn't sting that bad.

I got back to the car and broke the key off in the lock. Disaster, right? You're at an empty beach, all alone, on the wrong side of a mountain, and your cell phone is on the other side of a glass window and wouldn't work anyway, even if you could get at it. You're tired and hungry, in the middle of nowhere, you've spent twenty minutes with exactly one person who lives somewhere nearby but you don't know where that is and you have places to be and things to do and your key is broken and there is nobody around and you have to get out of there somehow as soon as you can so you can go deal with life itself...

I tried a variety of ways to get into the truck, and failed at all of them.

I sat down to calm down, and then walked over to some rocks, dangled my feet in the water, looked at Costa Rica, only 18 or so miles away... and I realized that I really didn't have to be anywhere, or do anything at all. Somebody would come along... or I'd walk over the mountain... and it was a damn beautiful day. The sun was shining, there was that early morning stillness, birdsong, and waves lapping gently on the beach... and I was getting some energy back...

And, after a while, I realized that I really wouldn't mind at all if I had a string of days with nothing to do and nowhere to be, just like this one.

I was more trapped by my need to be elsewhere than by where I was.

The answer to getting the door unlocked finally came to me, and in a few short minutes I was "free" to go home and do whatever it was I thought was so important I get at earlier. I couldn't for the life of me remember what it was.

Just as I finished packing up the car, another solitary surfer showed up.

I wished him the best of all possible days.

...

On my way home, I went up and visited Alan and his wife at their lovely, calm, wonderful B&B that they have spent 9 years building with its fabulous view of the ocean and Costa Rica. (I'm totally embarrassed to have forgotten the name of it, and it is completely off the intertubes)

They offered to show me their neighbor's house, but I deferred - I had places to go, things to do - and I couldn't let myself hope, too much - maybe it was a shack with holes in the roof, deep in the forest - I mean, that was sort of what I wanted, something that Henry Miller would have dug, but I kind of needed lots of electric power....

But by 11AM. I'd maybe solved the biggest problem I had, a problem I'd had for over 10 months, without even trying, totally by accident. It was magical.

When I got back to the chaos and confusion of life in town... my main computer - all 900 watts of quad core and and triple screen technological powerhouse, had died.

I can't honestly remember when it died, actually, it was kind of traumatic and I wasn't coping with it well. Maybe it heard I was thinking of going off the grid and euthanized itself? I'd gotten very dependent on having three screens available for my work, in portrait mode. That power-sucking howling technological mass of terabytes was always on, full of things I needed to be working on... but I didn't need to be working on them that day. I got on my decrepit laptop instead.. and had dozens of birthday wishes in my mailbox. It was awesome... I got too many wishes to reply to them all and was done with the computer long before 1...

Later on I played a whole lot of music - and had a lovely lunch and dinner with some friends.

I can't remember what else happened that day, but it was a perfect b-day.

The death of my main machine actually opened up a whole new realm of possibilities for me, but I'll get to that in my next blog.

(my apologies to Alan, I will rewrite this piece with the name of his B&B as soon as I remember it)

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David Täht writes about politics, space, copyright, the internet, audio software, operating systems and surfing.


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