Archive for February, 2009

Coming Down

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

The sight of the small brown silo, three-quarters full of aquamarine capsules in the flat field of green of my kitchen table this morning, triggered an odd thought that the dwindling supply of doxycyline somehow marks the daily fade of the experience of India. I’m back, but not completely, as long as I’m still taking medicine I took for the trip. Taking it at this point feels more like extending the trip by its habits than a real necessity- though the cloud of mosquitoes in my room at the India Guest House the last two nights is enough motivation.

Kind of mundane as drug experience metaphors go, but there it is. And something else about returning feels like coming down. Maybe it’s just the lack of sensory over-stimulation and intricate cultural differences, but NY seems kind of shabby and dull, weird for a place with all the hustle and self-important intensity. It’s already faded to a mundane level, but the first day home, I walked the streets on the verge of laughter, sort of gloriously mystified by the letdown, and not a little smug about the fussy appearance of peoples clothes and gadgets. And something about walking around my neighborhood felt like visiting someplace like Berkeley or Boston, someplace I used to live.

I am reluctant to wash the sneakers that just over a week ago I considered burning, or the laundry which is still in a heap on my bedroom floor. I’m not quite ready to part with the burlap, vaguely barnyard scent I didn’t know I was carrying around with me. Though really this is out of a different type of conservation, as the real dwindling this week is cash. The forty bucks I came home with is now seven, and somehow doing laundry for as much to run one wash cycle as as it costs to have a full week of load washed pressed and folded in India doesn’t rate.

Clinging to the sedimentary residue that is clinging to me. I went to India for a bunch of reasons, and the longer I’m back, the more it feels like it wasn’t long enough, and I’m not sure if I even got any of what I was looking for. Still, something happened, and I’m vaguely aware that seeds were planted. So while I finish my medicine and figure out where March’s rent is coming from, I’ll sort through the other piles- photos, movies, audio – in the scenes, stories, comments below.