I Don’t Want to Die

A documentary on a 1996 climbing expedition to Everest which left over nine people dead including two experienced Himalayan Tour Guides played on PBS last night. Retreating from the summit down the treacherous “Hillary Step” some clouds flew in from the West. “One minute you could see the camp below, the next minute complete darkness,” said one trekker. Watching the documentary unfold as I lay on top of my down-filled blankets with the window open letting in 60 degree winds coming in at no faster than 1 mile an hour, I became cold. Out of respect for the team members on that mountain, I took no such cover. The climbers became disoriented. People were falling from exhaustion. One man became blind. All were suffering from hypothermia.
The ranges looked beautiful. The photographs astonishing. They were inviting. They were also threatening. The mountain seems to beckon. To call out your spirit. It wants you.
Watching the film I had the idea I Continue reading I Don’t Want to Die

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Walentin

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A Father. A Grandfather. A Shooter of empty, plastic diet coke bottles. I watched him use a blow gun with startling accuracy. This is a great guy, who loves Rafael very much. He’s really good with kids, too. He makes all those annoying sounds they make and does all those annoying things kids do. In this picture, Raf was saying, “No seriously, this man bit me.”

Fischer

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A new addition to the family. He lived under the couch for the first day and a half. Yesterday, i gave him swordfish. First raw (he did not eat). Second hot (still no eat). He may have read the same article I read in The New York Times Science section last month. How swordfish is high in mercury. I think it’s great his adoption home received The New York Times. Prestigious. But that’s how it is on Death Row, isn’t it? They cook you your favorite meals, you’re drinking 45 dollar a glass Barollo’s.
I saved you, Fischer. I saved you from a life of death. I also saved you from a life of living with a really stupid name, “Little Boy” was the best your captures could give you?

Botanical

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For the life of me I can’t remember the name of this particular flower but I can remember the name of the two guys who gave me and my wife 10% off our lunch plus a free chocolate mousse cake. Naz and Ragube (Sorry about the spelling I am sure it’s incorrect Ragube but you guys were busy with other customers and it was only later I thought of writing about you on the blog. Also, I wanted to get your names without saying, “hey, I’d like to add you to my blog because you did something nice for me,” Continue reading Botanical