Last night we cooked dinner in a kitchen whose walls had to be scraped clean of paint chips before it was suitable to use. We stayed awake too late, smoked multiple weed joints from, and I relied on candles to provide light for my letter-writing. I slept in a dirty sleeping bag within an old womb of a wine-cellar cave dug out of a mountainside, given to us – given!- by a gorgeous musty old French woman named Maria who hardly knows us beyond our smiles. (This changes everything, by the way. Details will come when someone more eloquent takes the helm.)

We awoke without an alarm and I put on the same dirty clothes I’ve been wearing for weeks now. I opened the windowless sliding backdoor of our hiccupping blue van Danny and sat on the floor because we are without back seats. On a whim frog-eyed Tim took us down to the sea where we looked to the south and saw the profile of Crete, the sleeping giant. The sun washed on our faces and the sky was so clear one could not imagine ever seeing another cloud. Following the bravest, I stripped my clothes off, hopped naked over sharp rocks and jumped into the clear blue sea. It was so cold and strong I lost my breath. And then it was warm and I breathed deep. And it was still January. We’re not in Memphis anymore, Toto.

I’m sitting in a room with a new and now truly dear friend Will who joined us three weeks ago for reasons I don’t know. He traveled across the continent in his sleeping bags on a budget and let himself be teased by Alpine views and Italian piazzas just to sleep ten days in the cold and damp of Aegean winter. Now the sun shines and he will leave us once it rises twice more. Will does not wash his hair and now neither do I. (To be fair, Tim never washed his hair but as a rule I do not follow Tim’s practices without a second opinion.) Together we ooze salt and the clear blue sea. We’ll all miss Good Bill Brady and moan when he takes off but he will be back. Will be back. Please be back.

My day is mine. I have no commitments that I have not created of my own accord on an empty landscape. Waste it or wring it, the day’s fate is up to me. Even the small things I don’t want to do – even they make complete sense. Maria and Tim are doing such things now, talking to strangers in the night about rubbled holes we want to build into palaces. One of these fertile grounds shall be ours in the days to come. You’ll see.

In the middle of the coming night we must venture to the harbor to net a new friend and take him to the cliffs north of Imerovigli where he will lose his breath in the sunrise. As Chris enters things will change. Everything is always changing and we don’t read about, we don’t hear about it, we feel it. Specifically, “oh, Biddies are coming tonight,” says Maria in an Indian accent. Welcome Chris.

I am completely, inescapably alive. I am aware of the elements. I am on a clear mission whose success or failure cannot be rationalized away. Vast spaces – red rocks, still water, dancing air and superior stars – these do not allow for rationalization. And so I am haunted. By past sins and failures, by designs on happiness so very close and possible, by a love so very far and impossible I am haunted. No clocks or televisions to make me feel good. Only the elements to beat the Life – LIFE – into me. Perhaps my head will explode.

Check back for further updates.

+6 (or is it 7?)
Anchors: -1
Shitty cold and damp rooms to live in: -1
Fucking spectacular warm rooms to live in: +2
Loaves of bread: 1/2 for tonight, 1/2 saved for the morning
Sailor shirts: 1 (thanks Beck, says Will)
Sailor Coats: 1
Marias: 5 (our own, our new den mother, hardware store, community office, and Petros’ much maligned wife)
For that matter, Petroses: 3 (2 of whom are confirmed married to Marias)
Demetrises that look like wizards: 2
Flying Elbows: Lurking like trains in the night.


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