Saturday, December 26, 2009

Shamanic Encounters

There is a very long bridge over water that leads to New Orleans. I had such a good feeling about this city and area. The animals of the area came out to meet me. I saw Great Blue Herons, Snowy Egrets, Hawks, an Armadillo and Pelicans.

The size of the wetlands is beyond comprehension. The highway itself was for many miles completely suspended on concrete piers. I could look into the forest and see only water instead of a forest floor. There were bogs that I rode through that made my favorite hometown Brownfield Bog look tiny. Lake Pontchartrain was looked more like a sea than a lake. I couldn’t see the land that was on the other side!

I stopped for lunch at a small place called Tastee Restaurant. I had been asking for a place where I could eat shrimp and get guidance on the next place to go. This was the spot that I was led to and I got what I was looking for. The food was very nice and I enjoyed talking to three or four people. I was directed to Grand Isle State Park which is 60 miles down a peninsula of marshes. As I write this, the breeze is coming off the ocean and I can hear the waves beyond the bushes.

As I was eating dinner, three feral cats came and visited, begging for food. This made me think about poverty and the human condition. On one hand to feed the cats would perpetuate the begging. On the other hand, they are hungry and to not feed them would be cruel. I decided to feed them a little and gave them my last two shrimp from lunch. So that was my decision today. On my trip to Central and South America trip I will certainly run into people that will pressure me in similar ways. People who will beg, intimidate, pressure and such. It has always been challenging for me to respond to this. One way that I used to respond was with anger. I would tell people to &**% off and it worked. We’ll see how it goes and I’m sure that I’ll learn a lot.


  1. When I was jamaica I found people to be like those cats. It ws how they made thier living, after feeling really bad about saying no so many times I finally asked someone who seemed nice how to deal with the overbearing begging and selling. He told me in a Jamaican patois to say "mwokay mon" it worked. I imagine that might be the way to approach those issues as they will differ from region to region. Turn on a friendly face, spend some time talking to someone and get the inside tips. I am sure you know this already, and if all else fails Jay is a pretty big fella. Love following the blog, I look forward to each entry.


  2. I remember crossing a bridge into new orleans and there was an armadillo road kill. plenty of beggars across asia and in nepal. it is a challange. it says something about "developement" and the painful "growth" of third world countries. it is also an incredible opportunity to fall back on inner serenity. not necessarily you "own" inner serenity, but universal serenity that includes the beggars.
    Ed P.

  3. I hear you it can be frustrating since some people less fortunate see an American and assume we can just give it away at a moments notice....the disparity is defiantly an eye opener even in our own country...keep the rubber side down :0)

  4. New Orleans and that whole area is really special... it's where one of the greatest rivers in the world reaches the sea. It's all about water and its wonderful nurturing energy. Unfortunately a lot of bad stuff gets carried downstream along with the good energy. So the area needs a lot of healing. At the same time it's incredibly fertile and inspiring, and can give healing to us. Have some gumbo!

    About the cats, and possibly encountering beggars in the future - I think it's OK to make a policy of ignoring the appeals unless your intuition tells you it's right to give something.

    Good luck and keep us posted - I'll be reading!

  5. I have wondered where Blue has been off too. I have been enjoying following your trip. I have sent out lots of energy so you stay alert and connected. Enjoy and have a blast. Michael

  6. It sure was nice meeting you the other day. I am back in Baton Rouge. I have a solution that may work for you with the people asking for money. I set myself a budget, then I get a roll(s) of quarters and allow myself to give as many or as few as I want to each individual up to my day's allotment. I feel very good about my system. Have fun! Erin