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1980 8 of 10



Drive past the ruddy smoking fire on the New Jersey pier about 9:30, after walking to Paul's by 8:10 past stragglers of beggars, cheery Greek tragedy-comedy pumpkins in many windows, and remnants of egg battles on the sidewalks, some ROTTEN eggs smelling up the place at Paul's corner, and closer to his house men are hosing down their sidewalks, but Paul's outside the battleground. We sip white wine and I have to be TOLD that he installed the new higher front windows, and he wonders where Ron has gotten to, and we don't really discuss further the possibility of the Village parade, and get into the Ansonia for $6.75 for his locker and $9.75 for my room, and in to find the place fairly empty and VERY tacky: gritty tiled floor, drab rooms and hallways, empty steam room and sauna, ONE new shower room, though the other two are VERY rundown, and a large pool 5 feet deep, about 20x50 feet, with one stairway closed for repairs. No one there to speak of except a too-young open kid who Paul rather likes, and then he wanders off to try to talk to an "unresponsive" older blond with a very nice body. I look into a few rooms and the best possibility is taken as I watch, and then sit by the pool watching people checking in and the food being set out. Time must pass quickly, because I get hungrier and pleased when I find there's a free booze bar, too, and then it sort of fills up by the time 11:30 or so comes and the food's served: good potato salad, lukewarm eggplant Parmigian, passable ham and chicken salad, a too-strong rum and Coke for me, and then later they come up with a good cheap champagne that I have about 4 glasses of with more potato salad, the first piece of lasagna after the eggplant's exhausted, and back for a third of franks and beans, the last to go, and get a piece of sheet cake later: good planning gets rid of ALL the food and MOST of the cake, so there must be ENOUGH people there to make it work. Photos of the few costumed Draculas and drag queens and creatures, and Paul discovers it's 2:20 and leaves and I ask the Atlanta blond to my room, and discover he's telling the truth when he says too much booze keeps him soft. He's sort of nice to cuddle with, but there's a fibrous feel and a withdrawal when I touch the top of his hair, so I guess he has a wig on. He sucks and I suck and he hugs very FIRMLY, without too much feeling, and when he says he'll leave I figure it's just as well. Wander the halls more and in a corner find a hairy balding guy who's playing with his cock in a nice way, and he comes up hard and I'm hard enough, so we settle into 69 and I play with his straining cock and he makes nice sounds and we tease and tease and push and suck and peer at each other, using his weak popper bottle, and he seems to be ready to come so I keep teasing and he does, loving it, and we fall into each other's arms for a few moments and he seems to want to have more to do, but I gently pull myself away and wander the halls some more, having a piece of cake. We'd swam earlier, not bad but not uninteresting to float and frog-kick and swim two laps in the slightly chilly water, and there are a FEW others in the water at times, but the fatties around the pool don't make for sexy swimming. Then there's another door with a guy playing with his cock, and his body is so silky and nice to touch, and his eyes are so Latin-tender above his sexy mustache that we begin kissing and necking, and HE makes little contented sounds and I echo the sounds, and soon we're into a stimulated orgy of touching and sucking and caressing and holding and kissing and fondling and whispering how beautiful are our eyes and bodies and cocks and touches and necks and chests. He may be slightly older, which only means that his muscles are coated with a layer of softness that makes his fine skin feel even more sensuous, particularly when he bends over me and kisses my face and neck and chest and goes down on me---and his hair seems VERY silky and somewhat thinning, but his eyes are SO loving and kind and Italianate (or Spanish) that I'm vaguely surprised that he speaks unaccented English: he's Gary, lives with his lover Joe on West 76th Street, Joe'd left early as Paul did, he was just about to leave, I'm glad he stayed, he plays church organ at times, he's been with Joe for 2-3 years, he comes here every 2-3 weeks, one parent is Italian the other English-German-other, his Italian grandmother has nice skin, and I suck on his neatly packaged cock so gently because I want to have it last, and he shoots VERY nicely into my mouth as we jockey for how much I can suck and tease and how much sensation he can take before stopping me, and he's VERY sweet afterward, and in about half an hour he's up again and pumping into my mouth and liking to look at himself and at me sucking him, so he comes again---he's not come earlier, when he asks why I'm not coming I lie that I've come twice already (and think that after he's come twice he might REALLY blackmail me into coming, which I could get into, but he comes so EASILY---"Not usually," he admits with an affectionate smile in my direction---that I'd feel sweaty and strainy with my prolonged attentions, and we cuddle and cuddle and cuddle almost without end, when he has to go to the john, and I lay back just luxuriating in the sensuality of the evening, and then he's about to leave and I say I'm leaving, but lay in my room to see a FEW nice things pass, and think to greedily want "Just one more" but nothing happens in about half an hour, so I'm out, surprised to see that it's 6 am, and getting light outside, and feel great about the two encounters---knowing people like Dennis and Amy would and did ask "Why didn't you get his address?" I thought I might WANT to, but I figured I was fantasizing him SO thoroughly that a repeat could only disappoint, and he probably went through the same thought pattern, and in fact when I passed him in the hallway later I was surprised to see, outside the soft flattering red light of the room, how tired and wrinkled and aged his face seemed to be, and how his body wasn't nearly as sexy standing outside as it had been lying inside, and there was a certain coolness to his wave at me, so he was probably thinking the same thoughts: the grayness of my hair that may have turned reddish or blond under the light, the sag to my body that the heat of sex erased, the age more apparent in my face. So it was complete, enjoyable, heartening, loving right there where it was. What was the PROBLEM was that the FACILITIES said "No, never return" but the ENCOUNTERS said "Yes, come back," so I'll have to go again and be DISAPPOINTED rather than simply being able to chalk it off my list and concentrate on the best places such as St. Marks and the Club.

THURSDAY, 11/6/80: Note from REINCARNATIONS 8, SESSION 4, page 7-8: Have we spoken about the incarnation that you had in Greece? You were an artist, and, as in this life, you were a lover of men. You were not the greatest artist; it was a rather crude artistic ability, but a winning personality. You always got by, you managed somehow. And in those days the work was provided [?], in your case, you would be allowed to live a little on the estates, where you worked at artistry. Rather crude (laughing), I say again, you were hardly the highest artist of the day, but people enjoyed to have you around: you were a storyteller and had a marvelous sense of humor. Also, my friend, as you were not interested in women, they could trust their daughters in your presence, which was of no small matter at that time. Women were valuable, you see. They could be used in marriages when they wanted to annex greater properties, and she could not be damaged. So you were very useful: companion to the young ladies.

FRIDAY, 11/7/80: Note from REINCARNATIONS 6, SESSION 4, page 11: I want to say something about that, one other thing, which is that you had many violent endings. You drowned once; you were a Mexican girl; your name was Maria; very hot, hot area, and you went into the water. Some---thing pulled you down.
B: In the ocean?
S: It looks like a large lake. So you were crying for the help, but you were dragged under. You were not to have gone into the lake. It has been told earlier in the life, when you were a baby, you would die by water. Now, as Maria, you were told as an infant---the spiritualist of the village read beads and said "This baby will die in water. Keep her away from the lake." So you were a head-strong, violent woman, nineteen years of age---
B: Hardly a child.
S: Overprotected, and very angry about that. And you stripped off your clothing and went for a jump in this large lake, and it was to your demise. Rebellion, so, is the moral, can lead to great difficulty.
B: You used the word angry, and that's---if I may---I feel at times, that there is some anger in me that wants to come out, or that has been touched.
S: Yes.
B: But I don't---it's so amorphous I don't know what to do with it. Can you say anything about that?
S: Well, as I perceive it, it is to do with parental restrictions, being bounded in, through the visions of the parents.
B: I don't sense any remnants of that at this time, I feel---
S: Well, it may go deeper; this is for that young girl.

SATURDAY, 11/8/80: Note from REINCARNATIONS 10, SESSION 4, page 14:
Also, you lived in the jungle once.
B: I love the jungle, I like that.
S: Yes, you lived in the jungle.
REINCARNATIONS 11, AMY SESSION 1, page 3: Vol 26, C373
She brought in ONE past life, saying that I'd been a baker (and I thought of the guy on the TV program from Brooklyn) who was VERY contented with life, liking food and wine, fleshier than I was---and then at the end said she'd only scratched the SURFACE so that my defenses wouldn't come up, but that in LATER sessions she'd tell me more, and I had to confess to a "bzzz" from somewhere inside of some fragment of activation when I heard her talking about that. So I asked her about my theory that eating meat while drinking wine was a good thing, and she said it was good for ME personally, but not in general, and THAT came from that baker's pervious life.
P. 8 "most recent previous life"
AMY SESSION 4, page 3: Vol 17A, R214
I asked her to tell me more about my immediate past-life as a baker---I sort of assumed it was in Italy or in Brooklyn. She laughed, "No, it was in Europe, but north of Italy, and not in the Alps, either, sort of to the northeast where it's more flat. I don't know what the countries were there---(I vaguely guessed Austria-Hungary)---but you baked VERY haute cuisine pastries, VERY carefully laying down the leaves of dough and putting on jams and sugar and spices, making VERY perfect cakes, there's your perfectionism again!" Not much notice of the gay and carefree attitude I seemed to have had before, I thought. Nor did she seem so reluctant as in the past of delve into my past lives, but I said nothing about it.
REINCARNATIONS 12, AMY SESSION 4, page 2: Vol 17A, R213
She talked about Colonel Davis, saying that he was so friendly and warm with me because he had been my father in a previous life. "You didn't get into the army this time because you're not intended to deal with that kind of warfare this lifetime---and in a previous lifetime I see you in Japan during the 1500's, a writer, writing with these brushes---like calligraphy? I interrupt---yes, it was beautiful, as everything was intended for beauty as well as function in those days. But it was also meaningful, political philosophy---there were wars going on around you, the warlords were fighting, but you weren't drawn into it, you sort of sat in the middle of it and let it all pass by, just writing. Your wife was like the women then: very small, beautiful skin (I thought of Dennis right then!), looking only to serve you, but since you didn't want much of anything except writing, she just had to bring you your meals and wash your brushes and fix your ink and such. You were happy, but she didn't have very much to do with your life. VERY sweet, she was; very pretty." It was only LATER that she thought the wife might be Dennis, and in checking she found that it WAS. "THAT could give you problems now!" she laughed.
"Can you see an intervening life?" I asked, "that would shed more light on some of his not wanting to answer questions or take responsibility? I'm willing to treat him like an adult until he trots out his child, and then I go right into my parent. I don't like that, but I wish he'd stop being a child." "Let me tell you something about the way I read past lives," she said somewhere in here. "It's not around you, in layers, so that this one close in is the most previous, the next one out is the next prior, like the layers of an onion; they all flow into one another: if an influence was VERY great from a DISTANT past life, that would be right up against you, but something from your immediate past life might not even be there at all." Then him as a doctor, in Yugoslavia, in one of those old villages where the houses are built up on stilts---I guess they're very old---he really didn't want to go out and treat the sick and dying, he was afraid. YOU were there, too, very much in authority, shouting at him that he had to go out and treat the sick---I can't tell if you were a wife or a sister or a mother---THAT would be interesting!---but you certainly had authority in the family. He was afraid of the pestilence ....

SUNDAY, 11/9/80: Note on ASSIMILATION!: Now everything seems to revolve around assimilation. In the past, I'd had flashes that I eliminate and burn up for 99% of the session, and many times don't even DIRECT thoughts toward assimilating essence. Suddenly I made the connection between that and the feeling I have that I READ books and feel that I might be AFFECTED by them, but put them on the shelf and go to the next ones without really ASSIMILATING what I've learned---put it into practice---before going to the next, which I similarly consume without INCORPORATING. Then there's some incredible connection with the fact that I now have to MAINTAIN the body: have to exercise and meditate and brush teeth thoroughly and stimulate them and type and use special shampoos and shower and try to improve my vision DAILY, ALWAYS---which is discouraging, as even SheLAH admitted on October 1 reading. The connection, it seems, that I constantly wanted NEW things, NEW movies, NEW people, NEW experiences and sights and thoughts, without really DEALING WITH the results of those experiences: I HAD them but I wasn't affected BY them. My calendars HAD been a record of the NEW things that I did, and then FINISHED with (rather as I go to NEW restaurants without really ENJOYING those I've FOUND to be good, much as I might have thought about travel as only going to NEW places but finding that I'd really ENJOY traveling through the COUNTRYSIDES of European countries like France, Italy, and Germany and Austria), and now I think of them as being records of the DAILY CONTINUOUS activities, listed above. Maybe it's the CONTINUOUS that's the clue (and a FLASH of insight: I'd concentrated before on the DISCONTINUOUS operation of READING, rather than the CONTINUOUS operation of APPLYING WHAT I LEARNED; now I just finished recording the DISCONTINUOUS facets of Incarnating Ego as DISPARATE INCARNATIONS, when the POINT of looking at them is to fit them all into the CONTINUOUS BEING that is I, the Incarnating Ego, the Being of Light, that USES all these lives as A lesson, rather than DISCONTINUOUS lessons---rather like looking at LIFE as opposed to looking at task-task-task-task---USE CONTINUOUSLY what I've learned, rather than "setting it aside to learn something else." Which is the same as assimilation, but in MY words and with MY insights it seems more ME and VALUABLE.

MONDAY, 11/10/80: 10/29/80 note on END OF OCTOBER ALREADY!: I'd planned to keep October work-free and write the play. So I've spent about 10 hours on the play and spent the rest of the time entertaining, fixing up things in the apartment, reading books that I didn't have to read, and getting called on ACM and McGraw-Hill for personal consultation which wasn't the sort of thing I had in mind. Not that I've been doing nothing: though still Becky's stamps, Joan Anne's tooth remedies, Actualism bodywork, and extraneous reading remain to be done, but I feel guilty about not working on the play, expecting a call from Sergio, relating the ideas to Bob Rosinek and getting SO enthusiastic he says my mind is running ahead of my words. But I HAVE managed to earth tooth-brushing so that the dentist said the teeth looked good, more exercising than before, and even more Actualism sessions, along with J's and personal interactions. So things are NICE, except for the tremendous depression that hits when I KEEP thinking of the play, or the indexing book, and I GET time and the listlessness of "too much to do" hits me and I watch TV, read another book, phone someone (like Pope for Scrabble) to do something, and don't do what I've said I SHOULD do. Bradbury lists (see LISTS 13-16) took HOURS and really produced nothing; lots of puzzles in The Dial, New York, The New York Times done, even some restaurants gone to, and a lovely dinner at Paul and George's, and transient pleasures that get replaced by DEPRESSION when I think of what to do next and the BIG things loom: the play, the indexing book, stamps for Becky, and I turn away (afraid of FINAL fulfillment??) to something less threatening. Making up tables of contents for the notebook, transcribing Amy's taped reading, washing dishes, searching through clothes to find that I have none to throw out, looking at plans for Mexico, thinking about going to India with John, WORRYING about Actualism progress without doing the SESSIONS, staying up too late and insisting on taking poppers when I don't figure they're doing me any good, though feeling deprived when I want to STOP doing them, and piling up things to do in my drawer that is the NEXT analog of my do-list, resurrected in a different format: PAPERS IN MY DRAWER!

TUESDAY, 11/11/80: MURDER MYSTERY COINCIDENCES: Apropos of almost nothing except being in town and passing TKTS, I phone Dennis Wednesday and he's busy, so I get a ticket to my second choice without binoculars: "Deathtrap." It's a fun play, with great shocks with the same guy who's supposed to be dead springing in from outside or up from the floor to clobber the hero, once phonily, once really. Full theater and I hope it runs forever so that I can say I saw it forever. Home and watch an unheralded "Endless Night" by Agatha Christie that echoes the play mightily: complete reversal about 2/3 way through, though "Deathtrap" has the frisson of a homosexual relationship and "Endless Night" the luxury of the 6th richest woman in the world building a fabulous house for Hywel Bennett by Per Oscarrson, playing a marvelously loving architect. Enjoy both very greatly, and then the next night watch "Topper," which doesn't fit into the pattern, even though it was about two dead people (hm, "Deathtrap" was about THREE dead people, "Endless Night" about two, and "The Plumber" about none---a definite progression), rather-too-fliply played by Cary Grant and a VERY slender Constance Bennett, and then "Sneak Preview" shows many films (I'm sure ONE of them must have been about killing ONE person), and I idly keep on Dick Cavett to see who he has on, and he has on IRA LEVIN, who WROTE "Deathtrap," which is quite a coincidence, with Don Stroud, or someone who worked on horror movies, and with George Romero of "Living Dead" fame and Stephen King of "Carrie" and "Shining" fame, and King and Romero are going to work on a SHOCK movie together. Then "The Plumber" with a sexy Ivan Kants (or whoever) and (his name IS that) and Judy Morris as the very believable heroine---though why didn't she just LEAVE the apartment (and to ADD to the mystery, right this minute, somebody buzzes the buzzer and I don't let them in, which mystery is VERY quickly solved by the fact that it's now 7:10 pm on HALLOWEEN and I'm about to walk across Brooklyn to Paul's for our evening at the Ansonia, and I checked the phonebook to find that this'll be the third-last baths to see, from oldest to newest: 58th St. Sauna (1), Club (2), Wall Street (3), Beacon (4), New St. Marks (5), Man's Country (6), East Side (7), Ansonia (8), Broadway Arms (9), and Everards (10), which I've been to, so Ansonia is NEXT to last, with only Broadway Arms yet to be seen.

WEDNESDAY, 11/12/80: LIVING A PART IN THE NOVEL BY GADDIS "JR": I started "JR" in 1977 (even though I bought it in 1975, because I wanted to read his "Recognitions" first, his only previous book, published in 1955, and certainly worthy of the status by the 1975 reviewer of "classic") and only got to page 127 before I couldn't concentrate on it anymore, and then I picked it up again by rereading through to 127, understanding it better the second time (maybe Barthelme's writing has made it easier for me to read THIS), and spent about an hour last night and most of today (it's slow going because it's so dense and unpunctuated it changes thoughts and people and even DAYS in mid-sentence) reading it, getting into its rhythm, so that when Paul Merritt called I kept hearing the book's lingo in OUR conversation, and that was heightened as I phoned Marjorie and she babbled on, and then later I got the phone call from Friendly Frost (though this was kept to the end, saying it at the beginning would have made it less of a mystery) asking if I used coupons, hairspray, breadcrumbs, bacon, frozen cakes, and other things that they wanted to send me coupons for. But this is a fitting ending for the entire month of October (see NOTEBOOK 383), so weird and unconnected and stream-of-consciousness has this month been---and now it's 7:30 and I have to get off to Paul's for Halloween at the Ansonia!

THURSDAY, 11/13/80: Note on J's #15: Phone rings as I'm leaving at 8:50, but they've hung up when I get there, so when Ron's not downstairs I figure he was calling to say he'd be late, and he shows up at 9:05, apologetic. He tells about the delightful Village Halloween parade he attended, without the "totalitarian police force of Canada" messing it up, and meeting a black he talked with for ages. Talked about a wedding of Alice O. Howell he went to a few weeks ago, with a guest with a Tibetan monk clad in a purple toga, and we're in at 9:25 for no masks, so I leave my silver one and he leaves his pink-plastic one in pockets, and there's more leather and hats than usual, and Someone Rogers wears a black mask that I ask about afterwards. Vest is back, jerking off at the bar, and I just sit easily next to the small, shy, pretty-faced one who seems never to talk to anyone, though at times he was behind me eyeing my masturbation, and I just felt very EASY about the place: didn't feel I had to MEET anyone (part of it being there was no one really DYNAMITE there---the best was the new bulky fellow with a beautiful body but uninteresting cock and jerk-off style, the VERY hairy Italian with the too-bulky body and VERY soft cock, but he got into it facially nicely, and the slobby blond who kept pushing in with his tiny meat), I was looking at what went on. At times I'd peer in on two or three working on it, and the circle would expand into "the action" for a few minutes, and then they'd dwindle away. The pool table was covered with black plastic, and the skinny blond disgusted me by trying to attract a bunch of people and then URINATING to simulate coming, and I was happy that not too many seemed interested in that, nor were they interested in a fist-fucking sequence with an older hairy guy who finally got off the table when no one was looking at him. The long-lasting Italian was there, too, but he seemed to CONTRIBUTE, coming when he was sucking on the cowboy I find so jerky, coming a few dots on the table egging on the skinny blond, and looking on at other scenes. I found the table exciting a number of times, but missed the vest coming most of the evening. At the end, the table was so great that I shot across it, LOTS of come on the black plastic, and Rogers kept patting me on the ass and saying that it was so great, and I FELT so great and could feel my lips widening in a DAZZLING grin, and I was pleased to find that EQUIVALENT grins were being flashed about the place afterwards. Ron came up and patted me affectionately after my orgasm, saying it was nice, and later I went in to piss and found HIM coming with ecstasy, bending his head over backward as he shot into the toilet, and then cowboy roared into climax, enjoying each other, and I said it looked like fun and he was amused and pleased that I'd seen that action. The guy I'd thought was from the Heights came to a rather withdrawn orgasm on the table after I did, and he didn't smile, only looked pained and open for encouragement, but when I went around to thank him for his coming, he was into conversation with someone else and only gave me passing acknowledgement. The blond who always seems to start with vest was playing with me a number of times, too, and he's a sort of person I confuse with others, including the fellow in the sailor suit, the only real COSTUME of the evening (the guy with the suit-jacket, tie, and shirt and long black socks from the week before, whom Ron said stepped right out of a fetish magazine that's popular with business-suited guys with roaring erections, was there only in an undershirt which made his ass look even fatter than it need), whom John pointed out as being Dick Currie, and I STILL wouldn't be able to point him out in a crowd, except that he's one of the many who look vaguely like Art Bauman. A blond who reminds me of someone named Corky kept playing with his VERY stiff cock, and it was great to look at, though his crusty tits were uncomfortable to play with, but he didn't shoot that I saw, though he looks like he could be fun to work out with. The shy-guy came, too, without fanfare, and people should learn that people WANT to watch and PROCLAIM when they're coming, rather than waiting for someone's "YEAH" butchly to draw the crowd and watch the AFTERMATH of the orgasm. Is it considered effeminate to groan YOURSELF as you're coming?? Rogers didn't come either, as I watched, but his cock was large and functional most of the time. Smelled a few poppers and felt better without them. Hope it's turned a corner (or I have) and it'll be AS good NEXT week! John was leaving, so Ron drove BOTH of us home (see NOTEBOOK 388).

FRIDAY, 11/14/80: 11/5/80 note on RON AND I HIT IT OFF: Was glad that JOHN was directing with Ron losing his way to our place about three times, but Ron laughed afterward, saying John was concerned and he was only enjoying himself. Ron mentioned that he was hungry (and I slightly envied John for being invited to Joe Gage's filming Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, being taken to a VAN to get to the filming site!), so I invited him up for an omelet, which John didn't want to join, and Ron liked the space of my apartment, used the john, and told me not to worry about the omelet, which I just said I was asking his choice for: seasoning before or after, without or with corn on the cob, two or three eggs, mind parsley? We had more wine, he turned down the Nassau when we finished and continued talking. He asked about the body table, I told him about Actualism, he read the brochure and asked about Chakras and energy-systems and physical-mental-emotional workings, and I said he'd enjoy it, so he said he'd come for the intro on Wednesday afternoon, maybe getting a body session, too. He said he wanted to find out more about a previous life as an orthodox Catholic, and I said that Amy would probably be very good for him, and he said it was incredible how much "synchronicity" there seemed to be, and how exciting New York was that he could make so many connections so deeply so easily. He talked about some monastery-intensive sometime during November and I said I might like to go to Holyoke with him for that. He said something that reminded me strongly of Hemlock Hall and we chatted about that, we talked about travel and religion and searching for higher meanings and the coincidences of meeting people who were at a place just where we wanted to meet someone. He kept being seductive so we kissed and held and necked for a bit, both getting harder, and I said "You would never have thought we'd just come from a sexy place, that we were two horny guys from way back," and he seemed amused at that, but we both figured, at 2 am, that it was a bit late, but that there was the definite air that we might make more of it at a later time. He read the letter on drugs, then phoned the NEXT noon to ask about tobacco, and Dennis retorted that they were manipulative, and I said they accepted tobacco and moderate alcohol but were particularly down on grass, which left a distinctive residue and lessened the highs by mimicking them in a drug-oriented way. Now it's Wednesday.

SATURDAY, 11/15/80: 11/9/80 note on GREAT DAY AND PUZZLING ENDING (11/7): Found that Bloomingdale's Chinese exhibit ends Saturday, so I get to library to do research work for McGraw-Hill, getting back to office about 2, work through till 3, getting BOTH checks (second submitted YESTERDAY!), which is nice, and then walk colorful, exciting, sexy city streets to Bloomingdales, past traffic jams that really threaten to freeze even as early as 3:20 on Friday, and the ground floor Friendship Shop is dazzling with mirrored ceilings and pillars, blue-silk Japanese (?) lantern for light, polished black floors, hanging silks embroidered colorfully, and Chinese merchandise in the displays, and ceremonial robes atop each main counter and phony but nicely shaped enormous vases everywhere on black "lacquer" stands. Go up floor-by-floor, taking two chances on the trip to China, which would be nice, and note with some asperity that "Antiques on loan from the Brooklyn Museum. On the Loge" amounts to ONE vitrine with 8 whole items! The Ceremonial Robes of the Imperial court has "gone back to China" and been replaced by the Trim-a-Tree shop---WHAT a comedown! The scrolls are gone, too. The People's Market on 6 is colorful, the model rooms impractical spectacular knockouts, the Soochow Garden Pavilion is in the process of being dismantled, the Warriors of Sian comprises 6 photo-mural slides, the Three Pools that Mirror the Moon is a sheer shopping area, and the dragon outside the Children's Palace was so dowdy that I almost missed it. Wandered cheerfully around the new-looking floors, and about 4 decided Le Train Bleu would be nice, particularly since they serve tea for $4. Nice cream sherry, tasty Prince of Wales tea (I'd like tea, with the Prince of Wales), ludicrously small but tasty triangular sandwiches of the volume of one half-slice of bread, and a nice apricot-pear tart with LOTS of whipped cream. Wander more, to my contented fill of artifacts and objects on sale up to $48,000, then wander up Lexington to find Putamayo isn't Mexican but Guatemalan, over to Madison for more shops, wander across the empty park until passing shadows in the Rambles, some striking autumn-foliage vistas under path-lights, LOTS of people at home on CPW, and stroll into center feeling VERY good, then overwhelmed by Russell's tape and overwhelmed in ANOTHER sense by Crystal's insistence that my mode of sexuality isn't consistent with Third Advanced (see Actualism 93-101). Quite an interesting, adventuresome, unplanned, spontaneous, enjoyable-in-New-York DAY!

SUNDAY, 11/16/80: 11/9/80 note on SOMEHOW IT'S JUST NOT WORKING: True, there are lots of "continuing" problems: dentistry and periodontal work, sexuality questions with Actualism, changing relationship with Dennis, lack of work on either the indexing book or the play, but there's a certain VIM that's still missing. I may be going on a trip exactly a month from now (though certainly the fact that Ken isn't going along is a recent disappointment), but I'm really not that excited about traveling to Mexico: Possibly I suspect I'll be traveling alone again. True, there haven't been any new indexes in QUITE a while, and I'm concerned about how much work people will be getting to keep them busy while I'm on vacation, but my work at McGraw Hill is going very nicely. When I'm OCCUPIED (skimming through Wellisch's "indexing and Abstracting Bibliography," watching a delightful "Cenerentola" by the City Opera with mad sisters, even eating fish and asparagus soufflé (and farting) with Dennis watching "The Spy Who Loved Me" and "Three Men in a Boat" afterwards) all is well, but when I PAUSE: then come the thoughts: what do I WANT, what am I DOING that's useful, why aren't I more HAPPY, and SOMEHOW IT'S JUST NOT WORKING. So I think writing a page about it will help---what it was going to do was serve as the transition to get back to the INDEXING book. It DOES occur to me that I should have it finished to show it to Lauren Bahr and Virginia Martin for THEIR companies to want to publish it, even though finding there are TWO new books on "How to Index" listed in the current ASI newsletter is rather discouraging. Then Dennis and I never come TOGETHER: I think last night could be nice, but he has to go downstairs and "work," even though he has no indexes hanging and none scheduled for him (at least I've called a few this morning and let them know I'm still here). But it's my "pauses" that are filled with negativity that I dislike. And I'm even DOING the exercising and meditation---even though I'm not getting ALL the bodywork done for me that I should, but it's STILL not enough, I STILL want more, and more, and MORE. Missed the Nigerian exhibition at the Met, missed Makarova and may miss the Joffrey, though I have been seeing SOME. But I DO need PRODUCTIVE work like the indexing book or play.

MONDAY, 11/17/80: 11/15/80 note on THE TRUE COMPLEXITY OF TRUE SIMPLICITY: Doing lightwork yesterday, getting down to the molecular level, trying to analyze the actions and motivations and "ego" of molecules, I tried to get some perception of their interactions and operations. And reduced the scope of my vision to molecular size and "saw" whirling identity-less particles BEING sent and BEING received (not yet quite getting to the level of seeing their own possible inner volition), with the CENTER of that "being acted upon" as a melting luminosity. How to describe that point of action? By designations of dimensional position, time-space velocities and direction, biochemical categorization of bondages and linkages and "fit" of particles, and by enormously complex multi-subscripted and superscripted parameters that, I saw with amusement, would require far more ELEMENTS to DESCRIBE than there are ELEMENTS in the material interacting as COMPONENTS. So that a TOTAL description, satisfyingly scientific and deterministic and reproducible, would form a UNIVERSE IN ITSELF which would be MORE complex than the action described. And when the mathematics itself gets so complex that the action itself is simpler, how easy it would be to visualize the "melting" of reality and conceptuality which would "fade out" the universe of "real" particles undergoing "real" transformations and "fade in" a universe of "equally real" mathematical SYMBOLS undergoing ACTUAL (mathematical) transformations, so that the atoms (which are IN FACT conceptual labelings of congeries of properties that we can STUDY as REPRESENTATIONS of what-is at that level of size and duration on the time-space continuum (from smallest to largest, here, rather than from highest-frequency to lowest-frequency---which brings up the OTHER continuum that Actualism proposes, forming ANOTHER "axis" of possible investigation, but in an orthogonality impossible to probe with time-space instruments), as opposed to our "visual" "perception" or "actuality" at "our" level of "room-size" and "clock-timed" "objects" on the "time-space continuum.") are IN FACT somehow LESS REAL (no need for quotes THERE) than the mathematical symbols IN ACTUALITY. So the TRULY simple (basic what-is) IS truly complex (viewed FROM OUR point of view) (in mathematical terms WE can "process") and the truly complex (what we SEE and FEEL) IS simple (effortless combinations of the truly-simple basic-what-is).

TUESDAY, 11/18/80: 11/15/80 note on DO I RESIST DOING THE LAST THING?: At some point, "all I had to do" was work on the play. I didn't. And I came up with the idea of the play when "all I had to do" was work on the indexing book. Which I didn't do. Then I washed windows, strewing the living room carpet with leaves and dead plant branches, having "all I had to do" then embodied in vacuuming. And I didn't vacuum from Tuesday through Saturday. I did other things BEFORE that. Now, this morning, it occurs to me that I might be resistant to doing THE LAST THING that I HAVE to do, because then I would be faced with the total unknown: what do I do when I've done the last thing I have to do? Would I, at that magical point, be totally free? And thus in a totally unknown area? Even on vacation, when I have the least "that I have to do," I still count down the number of days left in the vacation, as if reminding myself that THE LAST THING I have to do on the vacation is return from the vacation. Lists, in this context, are of course lists of ALL "the last things" I had to do. Getting rid of them (and via the "infinite things to do list," which tries to be some ETERNAL "last thing"), I was content, until now faced with the actual CONCEPT of THE LAST THING. Now I'm trying to "collect" that so that I can get something done on the ACTUAL "last thing" to see what "the other side" feels like IN EXPERIENCE. Since I was a KID, writing had always been "the last thing." From another perspective, "the last thing" was always a source of guilt, so that I could always rely on SOMETHING to supply me with guilt, some unfinished task that I had to do that would make what I WANTED to do somewhat more bitter and unfulfilling. The thought of giving up writing almost automatically produced the thought "What would then become my 'last thing' to supply that guilt?" I'm "energized" to exercise, meditate, eat, brush my teeth, pay bills, type pages, etc, by the knowledge that they're NOT "the last thing." If they WERE, I'd be reluctant to do them. I suppose some sort of "be happy" lurks as the REWARD for doing "the last thing," though of course I feel it must be DEATH, or DISSOLUTION, or NONEXISTENCE, so that I cling to the cerement of "the last thing" so that my dead body won't vanish completely before I feel I'm through with it. And also, of course, finishing one "last thing" (usually under pressure from ANOTHER deadline that I DEFY to finish something) is usually done with the INSTANT production of ANOTHER "last thing" to take its place.

WEDNESDAY, 11/19/80: 11/15/80 note on TRUE SIMPLICITY VS "THE LAST THING": Rising from typing the previous two pages (NOTEBOOK 391: the true complexity of true simplicity) and (NOTEBOOK 392: do I resist doing "the last thing"?), I can't resist observing that THEY'RE RELATED, and sit to type THIS page. DOING "the last thing" would PRODUCE "true simplicity" in my life. Then I pause. Is that all that's need on that page? This page. Which brings up Watts' brilliant observation that words don't create the UNIVERSE, they merely produce -- or "thingify" (in the sense of SEPARATE OUT) the THINGS of the universe. So I've been misreading all these years: thought doesn't produce the WHAT-IS of tables, it merely produces the SEPARATENESS of tables as opposed to the air surrounding the tables, the floors on which the tables sit, the knives and forks from the tables, and the mind which comes up with the word after the eyes have processed the light waves reflected from the atoms that COMPRISE the PORTION of what-is which I label as a "table." And I now feel drawn to rereading what I didn't understand of Heidegger's "Being and Time" to see if my new understanding clarifies what he says---which may (nay, IS, since I AM dominated by the weight of the four shelves of books that are "to do" as reading) produce another "last thing" keeping me from the simplicity of THOUGHT AND ACTION which would free me from the ruinous (of happiness) anticipation of tomorrow, and reading, and writing books, and understanding science. And this IS related to the dissatisfaction I've been feeling the last few days: read, but want to do something USEFUL. Do something USEFUL, but want to ENJOY myself. ENJOY myself, but on the way back from the St. Marks I berate myself for wanting to get back to watch TV on the caribou migration (see NOTEBOOK 394) or the Saturn Watch so that I don't have time to wander down another street, peer into a mysterious shop, eat something, talk to a stranger on the street for a possible sexual encounter---I'm not FREE, I'm not SIMPLE, there are too many "last things" to DO, making a SOLIDITY of time that I find agonizing when I really want the TRANSPARENCY of "nothing to do and all the time there is to do it in." which AGAIN brings me to the next page, the life and action of the caribou!

THURSDAY, 11/20/80: 11/15/80 note on THOUGHTS ON THE CARIBOU MIGRATIONS: When I watched the program I felt so INVOLVED with the caribou migrations. Did I feel sorry for them for their efforts? In part, but there was more. Did I envy their predetermined actions? In part; there may be more to it. SCIENCE reads in the complexity, asks difficult questions which the CARIBOU think not of, obscures the true simplicity (NOTEBOOK 391). Caribou, I'll bet, don't put things in such sequence that they have ANYTHING LIKE "a last thing" (NOTEBOOK 392). They don't distinguish between usefulness and enjoyment (NOTEBOOK 393): they merely do what they do when they do it, not doing anything ELSE, certainly, and weighing alternatives only in which berry to chew and which way to run when attacked by a wolverine. It may be that "which berry to chew" is the ENTIRE "purpose" behind their migration! "That berry" followed by "that berry" may merely LEAD them north and south. "The next berry" force them to swim the rivers at "the wrong time from humans' point of view." THEN there was the combination of SADNESS and TRIUMPH at the views of the killing and dying: no doubt about it, the dying of the weak and the sick and the old strengthened the herd; the combat of the males produced the survival of the grandest rack of antlers; the beauty we now admire is the RESULT of the survival of the fittest. What do we now do on earth? Preserve the mentally incompetent, let the debased elements procreate more fully than the elevated elements, tend to parole killers rather than execute them, hospitalize and drain the HEALTHY to care for, constantly, the perpetually sick and the lingeringly dying. Hoping to KEEP them perpetually sick, to PROLONG the linger of the death. The caribou are simple. We keep "last things" about us and become impossibly complex. IS brain-mind the villain of the piece? Caribou "go with" nature; man's brain-mind looks at, twists, perverts, resists, battles with nature. YET these sorted thoughts on paper give EMOTIONAL satisfaction, increase and sharpen PERCEPTION, and furnish CONSTRUCTIVE (?) food for the next series of ruminations and regurgitations. I'm impatient with Dennis because I WANT something from him that I'm not currently GETTING. Again as Watts put it, "I can't experience being in love with the thought of being in love unless I AM in love," and I'm not in love with Dennis now. Probably because I don't love myself very much these days.

FRIDAY, 11/21/80: 11/20/80 FINISHING NOTES FROM "BATTLE FOR INVESTMENT SURVIVAL": This follows DIARY 11992, B169 in Volume 27, for pages 1-100, 6/6/77; finished 11/18/80
21. Investor qualities: honesty and genius
22. Gain profits by taking losses: if it shrinks 10%, sell out. Sell 10 to 20% every year.
23. Buy more of a SUCCESSFUL stock.
24. Profit strategy has 6 points on page 116.
25. Buy those advancing in price; follow up gains and retreat before losses.
26. Bonds good against inflation.
27. Gold is ALWAYS good.
28. Don't need to diversify.
29. Establish emergency connections away from home.
30. Speculation is difficult, not easy.
31. Invest AND spend.
32. Gear investments to tax laws.
33. Safety in ONE inflation does NOT imply that the same safety will work again.
34. In inflation, go for QUALITY.
35. Investment trusts are no good.
36. Good management costs a lot.
37. Investing is better than savings.
38. Weed out bad and increase good. In a bear market, SELL. P. 212.
39. Investment managers should think of CURRENT profits.
40. Don't invest ALL your money.
41. Market letters: believe what NO one believes and doubt when EVERYONE believes.
42. Good clients make better money.
43. There's always chances for profits.
44. Unexpected market reverses are doubly important to follow.
45. Stock TREND is important to follow.
46. Look only 6-18 months ahead.
47. Avoid promotional stocks, under $10.
48. Beginners should pick LEADERS.
49. Need OTHER information beside "tape reading." Trends USUALLY continue.
50. It's dangerous NOT to own stock.
51. Begin by buying the best. If BIG companies buy it, it must be good, since THEY studied them and others.
52. Nothing is truly cheap unless it is good.
53. Never accept a story without checking the facts of it.
54. Find a bright young broker and go up with him.

WEDNESDAY, 12/3/80: WHAT DO I WANT IN LIFE?: Actually, what I HAVE: reading, work, travel, friends, mind-expanding adventures, entertainment absorption (TV, movies, plays, museums, restaurants, galleries, special events, lectures, gardens, zoos), sex, comfortable apartment---

MEXICO TRIP - 12/9/80 to 1/8/81

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 9, 1980. Bill calls at 11, shows up at midnight, gives me a surprise $150 cash for the stay, and has given me time to think of HEAVY socks and LEAVE binox case as last switch---and I don't need shoe horn. Tell him everything and downstairs to sleeping Dennis at 12:40. HE sympathizes with ME for having to put up with Bill, but then HE has to put up with ME! Alarm is set at 6:30, I sleep fitfully, but not as much TENSION as LAST night, and alarm clicks and he puts it off and I wonder what to do between 6:30 and 7, and watch says 6:55! Dennis says, "It's been ringing late recently." Dress and wish each other good vacations and it's chilly but not COLD to walk to A stop, get Lefferts to Jay and next train in is a CC at 7:20, getting me to Broad Channel, or whatever the stop is, at 8; pay $1.20 for bus ticket and find Aeromexico is STOP 6 in AREA 2---confusing. Via other terminals and check in at 8:20, getting far rear right window, plane almost full, and variety of tourists and Chinese board at 8:40 and I write this in seat at 9:01 as we seem to just SIT here. Off at 9:20 and tasty breakfast at 9:40; cloudy outside till 11:30 when I can see pieces of ground and they pass out bottled Margueritas. 11:50, halfway there, we're over the GULF already! 11:55, no, but enormous Mississippi DELTA? Flat, laked, canaled, VERY watery. 12:05 over Gulf. Lots of "stuff" in Gulf: drilling towers, static platforms, working ships, patterns of clouds and sandbars. THICK clouds and back to bumpy flight at 1:20---edge of Mexico? Seem to start DOWN at 1:30, but it's only 200 miles from COAST to MC. I REALLY debate canceling Acapulco and spending time in BELIZE; also fantasize about falling out of plane and landing (after five minutes) in water or in jungle and LIVING thanks to Russell and Shelah. At 12:35 (Mexico time) captain announced landing in 20 minutes, temperature 59 F. INCREDIBLE HUGE SMOGGY city as we turn and twist and bump over HUGE slums, ENORMOUS roadways and circles and squares. IMPRESSIVE buildings and sports complexes and HUGE dome surrounded by tents. One village before MC nestled in old pyramid OBVIOUSLY. Mexico City (MC) HUGE place---land at 1 pm. Buy $50 worth of pesos at Internacional, at airport, get 1,146.5 (22.93 pesos/dollar). Check in 1:30 that I don't have to be at counter 25 till 4. Search for cabs to Zoologica: 300, 200, 150, finally 130, which Information told me. Road BLOCKED, around and around. Arrive 2:15, see monkeys, birds, seals, elephants, buffalo, rhinos, giraffes, antelopes, coatis, lions, tigers, bears, ETC. Out to see bus: Puerto Aereo. I shout "Aeropuerto?" and he says "Yes." TWO pesos: 8.8. Gets crowded. I ride round and round, get off at the last stop---nowhere NEAR (see map for Estacion Aeropuerta). Walk across bridge, along road, along construction, and get to front at LAST at 4:10, exhausted from heat, dust, and altitude. On line and write this to 4:20. ADVENTURES! Sit in lounge 1E at 4:55, knowing THIS is not the MC Pope saw. I'm getting a blister in the middle of my right foot, my face is slick and GRITTY, but the wait told me that Gray Line has NICE tours to see EVERYTHING in 4 days, at only about $20 apiece, hardly the cost of a TAXI. Huge city, but on bus I was riding through the outskirts of QUEENS as it looked. Everyone hops on line as boarding is called at 4:40, thankfully not NEAR getting dark yet. I CHOSE 19A, LAST, but it WASN'T---last 6 rows empty. At 5:10 we move out and 5A is empty and he (steward) lets me TAKE it. VERY hazy below, and finally clouds close in. We have 3/4 3-deck sandwiches and fruit and sweet, that I eat, and spectacular sunset that I'm too blasé to move to a back right window to see if a picture fits. Night into Villahermosa is FIERY best, wells by DOZENS flaming off in their pools of water. Land at 6:10 in darkness and take minibus to Zocalo after clerk says NO reconfirmation necessary since 12/1. Oh? "If you WANT to, you can call this number." Oh? Ride to busy, bright center of town for 66 pesos and walk up and down crowded TACKY streets, past Olmeca that looks expensive, around and around, tireder and tireder, and come on "Tourist Information" and he directs me to cheap hotels but they're FULL. Back to Olmeca, resigned to 439 single, and CLERK says full and OWNER says OK. Pay 489 in all and up to windblown room to take NEEDED shower and change into BOOTS to ease blister. Walk malls, then to Tourism to find it's around corner and upstairs, and Estrella tells me ALL. Walk to Circuito #1 and taxi pulls up and takes everyone where they want to go, me to ADO for $20. Line, info, buy RESERVED seat for 50P, out to watch rattle-carver, fascinating with foot guiding knife, buy bottles of soda and wait long time for 30P taxi to Malecon and Los Faroles for GOOD Lengua ala Mexicana (Mexican tongue!) and potty Superior and bitter canned Tres Exquis beer for 109P, and back to hotel to say I'm STAYING two more days and get up at 10:30 to put my stuff away and get to bed at 11, tired but happy Villahermosa's working out!

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 10. Wake at 5:30, again at 6:30, and out at 7 after cabs. Cafe waiter said "Blah blah blah blah" and I stare until woman says, more simply "Mas tarde." Guy smiles and thanks her for simplicity. I go to "Restaurant Casino" for tea "Manzanilla" and omelet of cheese for 40P. Good. Out at 7:30 and decide to WALK to ADO, and it's short. Bus 112, next to CUTE kid reading comic books and "Super Raton" and he only offers me the soap opera one. Swampy lands with LOVELY herons and geese, then flat farming lands and LOTS of military traffic and encampments. Stop in Palenque town and that's IT at 10. "To corner and two blocks" for Ruinas. I start, stand staring when nothing seems to be there, and a Ruinas bus pulls up, lots of French and German tourists around. Try bank for change: "No rata." Get good cold Fanta and board bus for 5P. Bumpy ride out, up hill, past Mayabell camping, and to LOVELY green ruins. Buy guide, in to climb Inscriptions, down tomb, hot and humid picture taking, side entrance NOT a savings of muscle. Around back of the other three, forest dripping, down to isolated Lions temple, to pair talking, cross stream and there's "lost" temples in GRAND sight. To all three, then up TERRIBLE hill, prickly palm, slides, rocks under roots, and NO view down and VERY tired and hot and sweaty at 1:45. Around top for a bit of "thereness" and down quickly, chatting with French. Down to Palace, up and around, into and out of halls and courts, very picturesque, and down to rather tatty museum, but for MAP that's ACCURATE of the area, not like "imaginary" of booklet, and some nice jewelry and jade and statuettes and heads, but not much else. Rains prevent me going down to river. Wander back climbing all north group, looking down impenetrable back forest where one COULD spend a day searching old ruins, but not for me. One day HURRIED but enough. Up Count's temple, looking down at shape of ball court, and out AS rainbow forms over place and I snap pictures, VERY glad for chance, and out at 4:15 to expect to have to kill time and bus drives RIGHT in! Is the 4:15 bus I just catch the 4:30? Great: sticky TREE shows me the WAY; RAIN gives RAINBOW! ON bus, extraordinarily handsome Maya teenager with real CHINESE eyes and mouth and MAYA nose and quite HAIRLESS on bare arms and chin, but HAIRY SHINS! INCREDIBLE first two days: (1) fly, MC zoo, Villahermosa flight, hotel search, Olmeca, shower, dinner, buy ticket in ADO tourist office for ALL and TIRED to bed. (2) Breakfast in street, bus to Palenque, search for change and Ruinas bus, GRAND Palenque, seeing EVERYTHING for out-of-the-way places, rainbow, two Fantas to repletion, and bus back to Villahermosa. (12/11: $100 for 22.915). Out at 4:30, one Fanta in lower town, one in upper waiting for bus, smiling at guy playing with his kid. On bus next to Japanese, dark quickly, tired, doze, fingernail-sliver moon doubles in my tired eyes into eyes of meditating BUDDHA! Around to SEE those eyes in museum next DAY. In at 7, walk difficult way to hotel past Christmas lights, TV, elaborate Bethlehem scenes, screaming kids, wet sidewalks broken, lots and lots of plastic ticky-tack, and past good looking restaurant to hotel, tourist guy saying NO bank. Olmeca tells me I checked out! Up to room, down to get bathroom stuff, up to find NO cold water, shower uncomfortably and down to Azulejo Restaurant for awful bistek for 90P and bitter chocolate con leche for 20 and two Bohemias, nice and cold, for 22P each for enough money for the $10 I cashed for 210 in the hotel. Stare at RITUALS: businessman shaking hands and smoking cigarettes and waving at passersby and talking importantly away from their wives. Couples acting like couples: holding, necking, mooning, talking. Boys cruising and girls parading; families with kids and pregnant women and sheepish husbands. The rich going higher and the poor furtively hoping not to sink lower: feisty shoeshine guy guiding two kids and then slapping away HIMSELF, sitting on bare stones with bare feet. Boxer-type with WIDE shoulder muscles under Qiana shirt, posing and being stared at. Loud table of "men" in back. Stolid suspicious waitress. Men sit for an hour with "Una coca" and leave no tip. Fat ugly pushers, pretty girls, gruff German tourists, local kids all eyes and eagerness, on the make. I pay 160P and wander looking for a second place, but all are closing, pulling down rattly metal shades over standalone doors and going in and out importantly. Mothers and kids cruise by, dejected balloon-salespeople and anxious old lottery woman and bright-eyed shoeshine boys announcing services with chipper "Hello." Quiet quick pass-by. Wander around more and more deserted streets till 10, then up to bed, hoping to sleep LONG, AC having dried out sopping-wet bathroom floor where I THREW tepid water from the sink over my body to remove soap.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 11. Wake at 6:30 (only 8.5 hours) and doze and finally up at 8:30 (10.5, what I needed). Out in slight sprinkle and bank opens just then at 9, so I'm in to wait 25 minutes after great cash exchange and short "No" and "Una ventanilla" and he frowns at other "pushers" and gives me my money---9 people behind me in line already. Decide to walk river and lots of junky shops and slum homes and semi-factories, but no place to EAT. To GRAND museum, next to "Theatro Iris" a-building, and restaurant's on map, but it's closed. So sit on steps 9:50-10 and write a bit, then doors open and I have to wait a bit before paying the girl 25P at 10:10 and up to "Second floor," which is UP two flights, of course, BIZARRE museum images---shamans with MOUTHS SEALED or wearing face masks like surgeons; DOUBLE-HEADED both and . Must have SEEN them, as they saw HIPS like this: . Double-headers from Tlaltilco Mountains, Teotihuacan, and Xochilolco and Tula. Eyes from to to to . Also my "moon lune" ideas of . Finally 200-900 AD, they LAUGH with TEETH. VERACRUZ had smilers. CUTE west-coast huts and porches and people, all foot-high, of clay, 200-900 AD. "Vasu Pellican" is SO Greco-Roman in line and SO beautifully colored that one thinks it might be PHONY or REVOLUTIONARY. Museum has CONSTANT music "Let It Be" and others for John Lennon's murder? and "Jesus Christ Superstar" and other "movie music"---not QUITE disco but certainly NOT even "light classical." Some of the "special pieces" very nice, but most of the "monumental" is VERY destroyed, worse than the friezes I took in Palenque. PATIENCE from 10:10-12 on three floors, reading the Spanish with SOME sense, but finally tired of walking. NO one on upper floors, the two French flash past fast, and 3-4 in lower rooms were an IMPOSITION. Sitting outside nice restaurant at 12:05, waiting for them to open. FORGOT to bring fresh film, so I've got to be BACK to hotel---or buy it. Decent boring exhibits, but since it's my first I have patience for them. Good views over river and boats speeding down and men working on theater. Out at 12 and over to restaurant which they're readying, but they're STILL not open at 12:35, as I write THIS. Day's STILL clouded and gray, but I'm glad I did the SMALL and NUMEROUS objects of museum FIRST before going to LARGE and FEW objects of La Venta, having also gotten SOME background from museum script. "No one knows where they came from" and they'd THOUGHT of endocrine imbalance to explain the baby-like adults of the Olmecs. I just hope it doesn't RAIN in the afternoon, my last in Villahermosa, so I have to see it now. Good place to SEE but not very nice to STAY. Couldn't see WHAT I'd do for more than two days, except bullfight on Sunday and boxing in a week. Not even MOVIES look good and EVERYWHERE is the tacky MUSIC, even on the BUS last night, even when the music stopped and a guy chattered. Nice IDEA: expand way out here to get tourists NORTH to La Venta museum and WEST to CIMO museum and SOUTHEAST to Zocalo and the road to the ruins, and make WHOLE CITY vital. They finally let me in at 12:40, I DEMAND the river-window DESPITE table being set for 4 ("Will you be filled?") and order a Grijalva, green UNLIKE the brown river, with rum and what could be kiwi fruit flavor, great. Menu tells me it's Los Persicos, the OTHER restaurant mentioned by Fodors! Have Pepitas de Rib Eye with frijoles and guacamole, and hope the alcohol kills the germed ice. He suggests 4 beers, in order I'd HAD them: Superior, Tres Exquises, Bohemia, and Noche Buena, a GREAT DARK beer, which I of course ask for. Cheapest HALF of wine is 265P, over $10, and JUST too much. Central tables reset for 20! Grijalva SHOULD be great for 100P! Beers only 20P. Out to walk back to hotel in rain, take pictures out window for last, refill camera (forgetting to lock bottom, missing first picture), and get out to TRY for taxi to La Venta, first on "right" side, then across, then BACK and get there for 30P. In for 25P, raining, neat model of place, then a DEER! Somehow it's just not as GREAT to see a set of ruins so TAMED! More workmen then visitors, though the salesroom is open and pleasant like a Samoan palace. But nothing worth buying, except for noting that ALL the Easy Guides seemed to be priced at 50P. It rains on and off, I take flash pictures and hope. Leave at 4:45 and get attendant to root out the postcards, awful, buying 3 for 12P. Wait long time for taxi, AGAIN on two sides of street, and finally to hotel. Pay bill, get told to wait for 7 am minibus at Hotel Mayan and back to Las Faroles for great Carne Asada for 85P and beer and fried beans for 12P and see the Guadeloupe parade (cause for all the FIREWORKS!) pass by. Don't forget all the calling BIRDS in the TREES outside Las Faroles and in CAGES in shops or on street!) Back to Casino Cafe for beer and watch part of "Incredible Hulk" to 9, then to hotel and jerk off after slow start to a shooting climax to collarbone at 10, no trouble to sleep at ALL.

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 12. Wake at 5:30 and up at 6 to shower and shave and pack and down to wait for bus till 7:10, commandeering another car with 5 others. To airport at 7:30, no plane! Eat with Jesus, glass salesman, and at 8 the plane arrives, I board at right window, and it takes off in rain at 8:35, only 25 minutes late. LOTS of FRENCH bound for Acapulco, and Mexicana plane is STILL in MC for my friend's departure. Breakfast on plane, by coincidence, is all that I'd NOT had at airport: sweet rolls, fruit salad, and, well, orange juice, but I'd WANTED grapefruit juice at the airport but it HAD to be orange. Nice short hop and after fearing I'd get off on WRONG side, there's Monte Alban on RIGHT as we land, seemingly high and desolate. No tourist office in airport, so into minibus and strike up conversation with couple from Los Angeles, who tell me of hotels, restaurants, tourist office, and places to go. They say to go 30 km to the market at La Coruna before Mitla, they were with Howard Leigh for two hours. From Mitla, go to Teotitlan for serapes. Senorial is on the east of the Zocalo. Saturday market is two blocks off Zocalo. Peripheral market for Indians, not GREAT. See Lucio at Monte Alban, 50P for hour's tour. Artesanos on Garcia, 5 blocks south of Zocalo. Market one block south on Vincente Guerrero. Restaurants: straight across with white chairs to Tortilla des Papas and onion soup. Camarones Basque, same place, upstairs. Next door white chairs is cheapest. Bank's toward blue table cloths. Puerto Angelito outside of Porto Escondido, beautiful. Hotel Meson del Angel around corner cheaper. Go with them to hotels and markets, then back to check into El Senorial and to Tourist Office at 10:30 to get map all marked. Up to Santo Domingo Museum for GREAT Tomb 7 stuff and average "start of order" exhibit and ethnographic section. Lots of fireworks and shirtless sportsmen outside. Trumpets and singing at 12, and out at 1 to buy GREAT postcards for only 2P each and ask woman why girls are all dressed up: Guadeloupe. She makes marks on map, I walk up to CHAOS of stands, photographic displays, kids, families, and stand in church watching donors of flowers, crèches, money, models of donations, and kids kissing glass-covered Guadeloupe portrait, and getting a CARD that I briefly coveted. Out photographing and back at 2:30 to find I missed BANKS. Cash at hotel and rest TIRED in bed 3-4, then over to Artesanas, shy for asking prices, and to Casa de Culture for closed watercolor exhibit at 5. Oaxaca is NOT charming OUTSIDE center: people futilely knocking on doors, LOUD motor scooters, junky shops and smelly courtyards and small factories and squalid people living squalid lives. And they all stare at ME! Then to St. Philip Neri, whose altar could use cleaning, but since I'm here at 5:30, it could be lighter. On the left chapel is St. Gaudencio, martyr, in Mexican sandals and red velvet fringed pants that are OK but gold on red tunic-top makes him look ROMAN. On right, under a more dignified white sheet, stares the bloodied bearded face of who could only be Jesus---and NOT my companion at BREAKFAST! But the RECENT painting of the white stucco is rather Muchan Art Deco in swooping lavender ribbons and stylized drooping hangings and ropings. OR this is one of the ten sepulchers of the FOUNDERS of the order HERE. Then to the Cathedral for baroque splendor, and sit in park and try to cruise till I get cold at 8, not many SEXY people, though white-panted fellow I saw NEXT day in JEANS looked good. Look for El Portal and it's empty inside, as is El Patio, so it's Cafe Guelatao for TASTY cream of mushroom soup for 25P, saucy Mole Oaxaceniya con pollo for 60P, and good fruit and two beers. Watch people. Zocalo is emptying out and I get to bed about 9:30 pm.

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 13. Wake at 6 to band outside, laze till 8, some writing, then dress in sweater, too cold to shower, and the Patio and Portal are closed and Guelatao is full, so I'm to Marquez del Valle for 100P tasty steak and mushroom omelet and watch spoiled brat train his father, and at 9:30 change sweater to shirt and to bus for Monte Alban to be angered with their 10-12, 2:30-4, 4-5:50 schedule, and debate taxiing with couple and two friends, but someone says "Get 2" and I DO for 32P, OUT at 10 and back at 5:30. Bus leaves promptly, about half full, but it fills up with standees as we pass through town. Spectacular road up: views and Indian villages. Take quick look at Tomb 7 (which doesn't QUITE match guide photo) and then get to east side for building-by-building climb. Always DISCOVERIES! Want another bag for papers and El Senorial furnishes laundry bag. Shield my eyes from sun to look into dark hole and find my Monte Alban book reflects sunlight, lighting better (more widely) than a flashlight! Photos and notes in guide, morning mainly alone. They allow two hours by bus. I take 10:15-11:45 on EAST side, and wander 7 Venades (7 Deer) until 12:30 and couple central things until 1:30, 3 hours, then tramp to restaurant for 2 Fantas and write this. Only got "accosted" twice for "antigues," but I COULD have gotten nearer the shirtless guy. Hard NOT to be disgusted at not seeing (1) "an idea of how these tombs looked before excavation" (p. 28) and (2) walls "finest so far discovered at Monte Alban" (p. 31) because they're LOCKED! Shirtless guy at Venades turned out to be Patrick, the cute friend of Michelle who gives me (their?) address in Le Mans, since she said she WAS from Brittany. We chat of trips and their three months' travel, one month in the Yucatan! Then I go to pleasant museum, DYNAMITE photos of lumps of soil BEFORE restoration, and down west side in increasing discomfort from heat. Disappointed at end, but on road down talk to Luca who says tomb is ALWAYS locked. That's better. In at 6, pass the Saturday market STILL GOING, and talk to Luca who at LEAST confirms that "paintings belong to museum, not to archeological service," so he AND guides can't show them. The sheer QUANTITY of EXPANSE of stuff is overwhelming: I walk one LONG side of brick-front, then inside to a SECOND, food, brick-front, that extends three entrances, and circle to find another area out BACK, and go VERY far along some OTHER road, three TIMES as far as the two brick-fronts, and then turn back east another huge distance before ANOTHER road cuts in, and turn AGAIN to come to LIT aisles then a huge BOX, and turn to see expanse and it looks like a huge pentagon, and natives are packing to go amid great BARGAINS of huge white onions and fragrant scallions, wilting green beans and bowls of shelled peas. Enormous quantities of flowers thrown into muck piles with broken sandals, bits of meat and fat and gristle that attract rooting starving dogs, and peelings and wrappings and husks and pits and seeds and shells and plastic scraps and newspapers. The juxtaposition of the flickering glittery flash and color of Christmas ornaments against the dull brightness of steel: wedges, nails, tools, tongs, hammers, wrenches. Meats: loops of beads of sausage, tendrils of flesh, gobbits of fat, shiny thongs of tendons and fascia. Gelatinous pools of liver and bulbs of brains, kidneys, testicles, and other inauspicious animal organ orbs. Types and kinds and hotnesses of dried chilies, dozens of sizes of tomatoes, and sweetnesses of fruits: oranges, tangerines, little yellow limes, enormous grapefruit and basketball-dwarfers of papaya, obscenely orange when cut into crowns filled with shiny black seeds. Whole SHOPS of bananas: yellow, green, black, and orange; BRANCHES of strange artichoke-like plants and so many spheres of such lavender and orange and chartreuse that my tongue knows not names. Clothing: inner, outer, women's, children 's, warmer, colder, longer, shorter, all hanger-on-hanger depending from the rafters and brushing the heads of the shorter Mexicans, obliging me to duck down low. Toys: lovely bright tinsel-colors and sparkling tin exteriors, plastic with verve and zing and flash. Chocolate in lumps, sugar in cones, salt in glacial hunks, spices in pastel powders. Jewelry and trinkets and baubles and gewgaws and gimcracks (and ALL the overhead colored lights in the Zocalo just go off) and eye-dazzlers. Zippers and sandals and lingerie and hamper-sized baskets and wheelbarrows and safety pins and gold braid and rainbow-hued long stockings and electronic games and spark plugs and extension cords and baby bottles all in dazzling array (all the lights, at ONCE, come on!). Now the passersby: beggars and shoeshine boys and who I would hope would be tall sexy cruising tourists and men in tight white shirts with black swastikas embroidered on sleeves. Restaurant had no Noche Buena, aw! Perhaps Negro? Sounds good, and Modelo Negro IS good, maybe even milder than Noche Buena. And the bearded fellow to my right reads "Crime and Punishment" and the husband next ogles all the guys and the German boy-girl quartet behind me aloud dare ANYONE to daunt their supremacy. Two bearded hippies sit six tables away writing; hope no one connects them with bearded, writing, me. Guitarist strums and sings balefully, cripples moan and beg, newsboys wipe sweaty eyes tearfully, other boys run past on VERY important errands and the balloon seller chirps like a goddam bird and a pesky fruit fly likes my beer so much I applaud him between my hands. Someone stops at my table playing a tom-tom and I write as an excuse to not even look up, and the marimba band strikes up at 7:10 in the band shell, not quite drowning out the kids screaming, and "Crime and Punishment" bums a match for his cigar from the two VERY ugly German 40ish men behind me. Balloon octopi glisten brightly beneath the red-green-blue-yellow-white (one would think there were more colors) lights, and as I write that last (long) sentence, a boy asks a question I don't understand, a woman opens a case and inquires something that sounds like "Porcelana?" and another boy insists my shoes need more color. How writing CAN distance me, while including ALL---like satori? Fat girls in white dip red lips into lime-colored cones, and "C&P" looks like a bigger sexier Roger Evans as he slouches sexily in his chair and smokes his fetid cigar. And my writing hand boggles almost as my brain did speaking too much French with Michele and Patrick in Monte Alban restaurant at lunch. My eyes sting from day and smoke, and unpleasant Ugly-George-Hamilton-type-with-mustache triumphantly lights a cigarillo from one of the fat white ice-cream girls. Motorbikids ROAR past and I have to FIND my waiter to get another beer at 7:15, and what a GLORIOUS day it's been DESPITE former unpleasantness, now that one beer's gone and other's now HERE. The urchins selling artfully strewn bachelor's buttons from a wicker basket are cute. Marimba continues over CONSTANT drone of HEAVY un-modern auto traffic and guttural accents of newly arrived Teutonic tourists. Underlying rush of water from fountains, smell of exhaust, people, beer, and whistles, whistles, horns, and "cute" horn-melodies like "La Cucaracha"! Passersby making noises, drink-ice clinking, metal chairs clanking, papers rattling, voices constant, and I can't even hear my pen scratch, but I feel it, as I feel my arms developing a burn, and my still-unsettled feet from a HARD day and the beginning of a neck-shoulder-finger ache from writing SO much SO fast. Now I stop writing, I can see people; but German is an UGLY language! LOTS of VW's on road---too. Signs in lights, it dawns on me, says "Feliz Pascuas." Ain't that EASTER? Chill of 7:30 even getting to me, but it's nice to know my room's JUST UPSTAIRS! Fantasy: would you (C&P) watch my drink for a second, I want to go upstairs for a sweater." Pregnant woman carrying a BALLOON outside her stomach and ANOTHER serape salesman acts like a pigeon, stands off to the side and puffs his wares. Look quickly and think I see a DODGED RAT! Why aren't some of the tall, thick-chested, tight-jeaned Mexicans I saw TODAY here NOW? Ready for buying in the Zocalo? Hungry dogs lope by, pretending to be busy, and improbably young couples have two or three kids already. Tall lanky dopey guy who passed OUTSIDE twice now passes INSIDE the arcade. Trying to look casual? Woman with laces knows better than to pick me; my arms feel TACKY from too much sun and lotion together. Feel HOT, too! Husband DID leave wife while he went up to get jacket and C&P plays with a 50P note at his crotch and I think he's CRUISING. Mexican boys, though CUTE as hell, and EVEN athletic as on soccer or volleyball field, still seem, for all the chocolate splendor of their skin, SOFT and lacking in hard DEFINITION. BULK perhaps, but ABDOMINALS no. Stagger back to hotel about 7, too tired to go to ROOM. Get beer at Marques (or Bar Jardin) and see the couple from this morning, who went to Mitla instead. They talk: about the bus tour to Orizaba peak and Fortin de las Flores, about Puebla with its gold cathedral and its catacombs, about the Galle "Guide to Yucatan" for about 80P, the four-hour Chichen Itza tour, the small tours of Uxmal and Sayil where you should be in the front of the bus, and be sure to take a flash to the inner pyramid of the Castillo, and they say to go up the front and down the BACK of the Magician, and stay overnight at Uxmal for the sound and light. I finally say I'm getting cold, decide to go with them for awful 85P dinner of middling lentil soup, awful PEA (garbanzos) omelet, and LUNCH MEAT slice of ham with two tiny potatoes under tomato sauce. Tea (one cup ONLY) and flan, all squeezed between 9:15 and 9:35 because they close at 9:30. Decide I've HAD it and get to bed at 10.

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 14. 3 am: Wake from a dream that must be recorded: based in part on the semi-frantic conversations among the three of us last night, the dream finds me at some dim nocturnal garden party with amorphous interrelated people: men and women who are or had been married or lovers, a female child somewhat like Aviva, and me. I'm somehow the topic of the conversation---my effect on a former relationship is the topic, to be more exact---the involved relationship might be LIKE Amy and Adam and Dana and me and Dana's husband and Aviva, but some key people aren't there. It MAY be that "Dana" broke up with her husband, a GOOD thing, because of me (and it's only MUCH later, about 1/16, that Amy tells me that Dana's ex-husband is VERY good looking with a GOOD body and MUCH sought after by gays in San Francisco), but "Dana" doesn't want to talk about it, so I ask "Aviva," who was there and who I thought could give a "fair" report, to tell the story. Suddenly "Amy and Adam," seeing a similarity to their OWN story, say they can't take it, and Amy gets up to leave in anger and agony of sorrow. Then I happen to glance up at the night sky and see a "black rainbow," like an iridescent disco display (all Xmas displays at markets?), across a segment of the sky. I point and everyone looks up, but confused reports indicate that what's being seen is CHANGING. "Rings around Jupiter" says "Amy," and "Rings around Venus," says "Dana," and I scoff and say in jest "Rings around your anus." It's more like swirling smoky WEDDING rings in cylinders of 3 or 4, whirling in 6 or 8 "spokes" around an invisible central hub. "They're more like rings on a carousel" I shout, expecting others to AGREE with MY interpretation, but they go from perpendicular to earth to parallel to earth and they're like TIRES in some huge carousel that we're RIDING, but they're INTERFERING with a sort of ring of DODGEMS that we (riding the tires) have descended upon. "What's the SIGNIFICANCE of this dream?" I demand of myself, of them, and of the dream itself, IN the dream. (Wisdom challenge?) "Machines must work for man or man will be made to work for the machines" came back. What? And I see an instant correspondence in my life: I can make plane flights and cameras and computers work FOR me, easing and enlivening my life, or I can LET flights and computers and busses and plastics RULE ME. It seems VERY profound, I wake and start to deem it trivial, but it SEEMS also somehow to apply to the Mayan, Mixtec, and Zapotec ruins I've been seeing: if farming and architecture and sculpture are ruled by MAN, they remain benevolent TOOLS. When man GIVES OVER HIS LIFE to astrology, or farming, or temples, or irrigation systems, man becomes ruled BY them, no longer SERVED by them. And THAT seems UNIVERSALLY applicable in ALL time-space. (Now 3:15 am.) Maybe, I think immediately, the dream would be MORE applicable and true if "the system" were substituted for "the machine" in the above context. And the VERB, the AIM, should not so much be "rules" one or the other or "is ruled by" the other or the one, but each "goeswith (Watts' term)" each. How potent: "Each goeswith each" seems more Zen than "Tat tvam asi" ---Thou are That. Each goeswith each. Rather than A=B, it's A=A! Or better C=C, where C=A OR B. A AND B? TRVELY, TRULLY, TRULY, TRAVELY, TRULY ("typos") equations from All/one's pages. Turn off the lights and arrange my sunburned arms, when a FURTHER LEVEL of applicability dawns---or re-dawns, since it WAS in the dream---the "meaning" of "A goeswith B" ALSO applies to CONVERSATION (or REVELATION) part of dream, that UNDERSTANDING has to GOWITH a PERSON: too much said will bewilder a person; a person must be ready for what a person is told, or the person can't USE the information but is DRIVEN BY the information. I wonder if all this isn't some sort of "immortal-connected" "Mexico-influenced" "personal revelation" rather like Alta notes were. As if I could turn into (TURN into??) channels of information (as I pointedly WALKED ACROSS "innermost Holy of Holies" on Central Mound and STOOD AT "umbilicus of world" on Central Altar in North Sunken Plaza to "tune in---attune myself ... " ...and suddenly those words are so MEANINGFUL and APPLICABLE to the junction of a PERSON with KNOWLEDGE to a PLACE with KNOWLEDGE, so that the TIME-VARIABLE vanishes IN the atunement---at-une-ment---atonement. Have I found a power-spot? I recall my vague wish to RETURN to Monte Alban on bus with Lucio. No, that SPECIFIC action seems silly, but surely I hope to remain OPEN for more "transmissions" of PLACE-knowledge through the TIME-barrier. Not BARRIER, since that MAKES a barrier OF it---the time-VARIABLES THEN and NOW must be ASSIGNED the variables from before, A and B, so that what WAS A=B is NOW C=C, where C=A AND B! Vague impression from earlier float through mind: Copan statues LOOK Chinese, as Maya INDIANS do. Olmec statues LOOK African. Is it MORE likely that CHINESE and AFRICANS BOTH came all the way to Mexico OR could, somehow, Chinese and Africans (including Leakey's primeval man) have BOTH come from MEXICO? 3:50 am: another set of coincidences: THIS morning, annoyed by chirping cricket, I thought NOT to kill it but to enclose it in my plastic bag and throw it into the street. I "saw" that I could scoop it from the enclosed corner of the closet in the bag. As I lay down for the second time after writing, I idly wondered what the Zocalo would look like at 3:30 am, I heard the cricket; opening the door, he's in THE VERY CORNER I "saw" it in, so it was EASY to get it in the bag AND open the window and throw it out AND see what the Zocalo was like at 3:40 am: empty save for one or two cars on street and one or two peons walking, lights out, area QUITE quiet. COINCIDENCES! CRAZY morning, Sunday: Jerk off, write, downstairs at 9:30 and get caught on idea that I'll take BOTH tours (1: Tule, Tlacolula, Mitla; 2: Coyotelco, Jalisza, Ocotlan) today, only 440P for 8 hours of tours, $20 or a bit less. BUT get out to restaurant and they DON'T bring menu and they DON'T bring food so I LEAVE and sign up for tour, then RETURN and STILL don't get served, so I'll take the first tour BREAKFAST-LESS! A magical mystery tour since I have NO idea WHAT the places hold! Except Mitla, where I go for an hour, and if I like it I can always return tomorrow. Otherwise I seem to have seen all the tour has to offer. Dejected 13 of us on bus, and I seem prepared to be depressed. Still tired from VERY busy yesterday? 10:15-10:45 to Tule; 11-12:15 at Mitla ruins; 12:40 Tlalteclola market; 1:30-2, drive back. Road to La Tule deserty, and I KNEW I remembered the name but follow guide blindly into courtyard of church and turn before realizing it's the TREE. Looks pretty good if it's dying, but there ARE a lot of branches and trunks for a SMALLER proportion of leaves. Few photos and back in bus to pass Dainzu and Lambityeco and Yagul and get even MORE depressed that we're not THERE. PASS Mitla museum and guy talked ONLY Spanish WHOLE WAY. ONE Mitla building IS spectacular with "no paper admitted" dressed stones and "cementless mosaic" STILL ORIGINAL, but EVEN when he starts talking to me in English I remain pouty. Feeling sorry for myself feeling sorry for myself? There till 12:15 and then to Tlalteclolo market for impossible-to-capture colors and quantities AGAIN, and back on bus to be let off PRECISELY at 2 pm with glum Torres at Senorial. To Bar Jardin for Puerco el Coloradita, pork in RED molé, for 85P and two beers, and it's not bad but it's not super. Sit glumly deciding what to do and figure I'm just TIRED, so up to room to rest a bit, then decide to READ, and it gets cool on sunroof, which IS nice, and down to room to read before going to BED. Band plays, mercifully muted by distance and door, and I watch lightshow of lights and colors and shadows on walls and ceiling. Finally wrench myself up at 9 and go to dinner at El Asada Vasco, sore left arm leading me to think maybe it's DIABETES: no breakfast from 9-2, then eat and get REACTION of lassitude and fatigue. STOP IT! Steak is large and tasty, cheese in tomato sauce good, parsley-butter tasty, TINY refritos, and DELICIOUS Sangria. Dessert tart for 60P that's a good moist rum-taste, and then they don't CHARGE me for it. This place has the best clientele in town I've seen: rich locals, elegant tourists, handsome girls and boys serving. VERY contentedly out at 10, take a few circles around the Zocalo to see what's doing (nothing) and get to bed at 10:30, latest yet?

MONDAY, DECEMBER 15. 5 am: More movie-dream: Charlton Heston is helping people up raised stairways to help fortify a 106-story skyscraper for his "band," but after he climbs to the top and feels the earth and building shake, he deserts and tries to subvert the "top-takers" into being "bottom-takers," knowing it's easier to survive in the cellars than be forced out by fire at the TOP. He comes back and is served food, but old woman whom he helped tries to spread the alarm against him. He gets the radio and announced "Atlanta, Atlanta," and all panic and he continues, "Were you ready for that? Well, you should have been," and he goes on to make up an imaginary enemy to get the panicked people back to his side. Tune in tomorrow, or at 6 or 7 am, for next chapter? Up at 9, down to hotel restaurant (none others close are OPEN) for toast and orange juice and rolls and grainy chocolate for 40P and to tourist office at 9 exactly for museum hours, and since they're open till 7, I'll do them last! To bank to NO lines for cashing $150 at last, then to hotel to pay bill, around corner to reserve taxi for airport manana, and to bus station to Mitla. 9:52 am: GRAND idea, take Mitla bus to Lambityeco, ON the road, and I'm BOUND to find a tourist going EITHER way to EITHER ruin and then maybe bus EITHER way to Mitla OR other ruin, depending on how I FIND them. Or, ideally, find someone at Lambi who'll take care of the rest of my day! Local bus picks up and lets off lots of people, and I get off saddened to find NO one at Lambityeco. Pay 3P, open gate after being told to climb back steps, GOOD friezes and masks preserved, there 1/2 hour, out to hitchhike BOTH ways and bus comes QUICKLY to take me FREE to Dainzu. Walk cool-hot road to ruins, 3P more, and glyphs are VERY eroded under shield, but half-fixed/ half-ruined ball court worth the trip. Nice climb to top of hill for view and map. (Map on p. 51.) Catch a truck ride from halfway to road, and hitch and get a BUS to Mitla for 8P---bus 10-10:45 to Lambi, there till 11:15; then to Dainzu and at 12:15 start out, truck ride halfway to road to 12:25. EMPTY highway toward Yagul! BUT after few no-rides, at 12:35 is a bus for Mitla that gets me a seat as we go through Tlacolula and fill up again. Both, so far, really WORTH it! Walk Yagul road 1-1:15. Hot! Yagul to 2:55, FABULOUS. To road by 3, thanks to three guys' ride and then hitch fruitlessly till TRUCK picks me up at 3:08 and takes me to CENTER of way between museum and grounds by 3:20, and I pay MY 10P (as opposed to TOUR's paying for me) at 3:25. Yagul was marvelous (see map on photo page), just GREAT views and cactus and blimp and spectacle. Out and catch truck to Mitla, into ruins again to see them all over with ENGLISH talk by American Jewish Congress tour of doctors from NY-NJ! Make map of stairs down and up and areas under floors of temples (see p. 52), and guide says that under #3 was the tomb of the warriors, under #2 the tomb of the priests, and the Tomb of the Leaders is yet to be found, probably under the pyramid WEST of the area, under a CHURCH! HOLES in facades were for trunks of trees for awnings at festivals. Give card to a book publisher from NJ! Views of glyphs over quadrangles behind church which is BUILT over a quadrangle! Guide OK's my ride back to the museum on the bus at 5, and I get to Leigh's collection AS he comes out. Start talking and get to know his wind (nose turning up) and rain (tongue turning down) brothers, his bat caricatures, his male loincloths, his absence of pornography (except for blind old man with HUGE phallus, "consolation" as he put it), his "indelicate story" of the ocelot "shitting" on the lizard's supposed importance, and his impatience ("I wasn't there, I know as much about it as YOU!") with "Why" or "How" questions. Give him 100 pesos, for which he seems truly grateful. Out at 6 to look at END of Frissell museum's light, and find that the restaurant won't be open till 7 and next-to-last bus is at 6:20. Out for a Squirt and another soda for 10P, and 14P to Oaxaca, in near-dark to total dark at 7:30, writing the following poem about KIDS: Stupid kids are unforgivable / But smart kids are even worse. / Fat kids are just obscenities / And skinny kids a curse. / Sexy kids are much too precocious / While ugly kids are just a bore / Quiet kids I find atrocious / While raucous kids I just abhor. / Dribbly bubbly piddly babies / All of them should just be shot. / Snotty kids should be given rabies / For all the love for them I've got. / I was probably a horrid child / Simpy, picky, obnoxious, wild. / Mother probably wishes she could drown 'im / How is it then that I can't stand 'em? Back to hotel and change for El Patio at 8 for INTERESTING meal till 9. Extraordinary how TACKY a restaurant can be. El Patio, set up for a table of 26, has the Chinese-Jewish couple, and she seems to get sick and they have to leave with a tinfoil doggie bag; Mrs. Uptight Westchester and daughter having an AWFUL time on a glass of wine and a Coke; and three lovely Germans, one female (who had Bananas Seengapore) and two lovely guys (one of which, the loveliest of all, had Crepes Suzette, which USED the lime peel and orange peel and orange juice and Grand Marnier), and me, who ordered a Combination 4 (I'm SURE I said "Quatro") and got something ELSE (they thought FIVE), and when I complained, got the same thing (two guacamole covered tacos filled with what tasted like tuna but was probably chicken, two special Oaxacan tacos "con picadollo" that turned out to be CHEESE, and a TINY tortilla under mole and a TINY bit of refritos and ONE chip) PLUS a piece of STEAK. For 100P. And LIKE El Asada Vasco (when I got the Asada Oaxacenia for 120 and sangria for 2 for 65 and dessert for at least 40, got a bill for 110+65+20 for food=195+19=214, which I gladly paid, left 30P tip and LEFT, and TONIGHT the Combo 4=100, the half Santo Tomas Chemin Blanc rather good wine for 90, and THAT WAS IT, for 190+19=209, without a CENTAVO for the Crepes Suzette marked for 60P. So THERE I took a shiny 20-c piece for souvenir, and 10P, and left 30P 80 and Left, swinging over to Marquis del Valle at 9:30 for a Noche Buena, GOOD cold farewell to Oaxaca, nice at start and end! Then to the FAR end of Bar Jardin for two dark beers. Santa C's back, rocking jollily from side to side as he walks, and still the metal plate at the corner BANGS when a car hits it right, and NO one seems to be cruising the Zocalo. Club soda spritzed against attack of dog packs in Oaxaca! At 10 I'm exhausted, pricing pure wool serapes STARTING at 900P and synthetic at 300P. POOR old man trying to uphold STANDARDS. Tired of thinking at 10:30, so leave call for 7 am and get to bed.

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 16. Odd dreams: (1) Working on some kind of book and woman in charge is saying "And we have to live with that style of page number, with those floral designs at the top of each page, with those types of chapter divisions, illustrations, etc. (2) A group is finished some kind of performance, an opera or oratorio, and we're all dressed in black gowns, like graduates. It's time for the final bow and we've not rehearsed the lineup enough: there's a gap in front of me and we're too tight in the second row. There's jostling back and forth and I think "I only had a secondary part, so I should stay in back." The next day the reviews have come out and everyone thought we were just AWFUL: How could the lead singer have lost his way in the main song, how could the duets be so poor, how could the chorus have been so bad? I excused them, saying something like "What do THEY know?" and "remembered" they'd said I "attacked too fast." I didn't even know what an attack WAS, but in fact I could see myself ever eagerly starting to sing too quickly, and sloughed it off as "too little rehearsal, and it was only an amateur performance anyway!" Wake at 5 am with those memories and doze back off until the phone jolts me awake at 7. Shower takes a LONG time to warm, but it does, and finish with bathroom at 7:30 and pack till 8, sorting out "souvenirs" and "still to use" papers and putting everything firmly into bag INCLUDING raincoat, without TOO much pressure. Down JUST as all those clanking churches ring out at 8, and car drives right up and we're only 2 to airport at 8:20 and I check in and finish this at 8:33, waiting for plane. 9:10 plane is IN at 9:15 but OFF at 9:35, landing at 10:05. Good view of Monte Alban. Countryside VERY hilly and villagy and could be HUNDREDS of Mitlas hidden there, but I have LITTLE interest in it. Along coast and small inlets, and land at Acapulco and out for adventure! Wow! Acapulco! Stair problem behind LOVELY 6'2" Mexican of 12 with fat thighs and a WADDLE under his tight-fitting designer jeans. Even the STEWARDESS liked him. Off at 10:15 into jitney to terminal and onto cab at 10:25 for 89P. I AGAIN hit it lucky: say my friend told me to go to "Centro" and phone. "Centro" turns out to be ENTIRELY across city. HOTEL section is all shops and tourists and heat and glitz. HOME section is all private and quiet and noncommercial. "Centro" is noisy and crowded and older and poorer. Off cab at 11:15 and telephone truck isn't working. Take photos and ask for bus to airport. Have to change at Passy. Wait as dozens of VERY sexy tourists and Mexicans go past in swim trunks. Not QUITE as nice as Rio, but maddeningly nice for ME. Decide not to stay, and bus is a CRUSH and people scream to be let off as full bus zooms along avoiding stopping, but I get OUT at next stop and hail occupied cab for 200P and have LOVELY trip, even with a photo stop, and to airport at 12:35, to write this during long line for flight 301 check-in. May not even have time to phone Lavender and Lowman from AIRPORT, and I'm feeling lightheaded from having only a Coke and 4 cookies on the Oaxaca-Acapulco flight. 20P airport tax takes me down to 500P notes. Awful snack bar and I desperately to upstairs, sit in bar, then to restaurant at 12:50 for special enchiladas and Modelo Negro. Whew! I'm #80 on flight and it appears to be free seating. Ugh. He said "Better have lunch here." Well, the stop was REALLY worth it and now I'm SURE not to come back to Acapulco. Merida will be the center of the REST of the trip after MC. Seats WERE assigned before I KNEW it: 14C indeed! LOVELY sharp-eyed guy looks at the muscle-builder pock-faced swimmers, and I move next to him to sit. YUM! Finished eating (for 125.40) at 1, in waiting lounge at 1:20 (for 1:10 flight!). Boarding announced at 1:35, NOW. Off into clouds at 1:55, one last GRAND shot of Acapulco Bay! So I was even lucky NOT to get my choice of LEFT window seat! Incredible! Cloudy flight, drab hills below, sharp turns, and BOTH sides get ENORMOUS MC at 2:30 landing. American straw-hatted, open-shirted 50ish clod slept whole trip at his WINDOW! Glad I have transport to Hotel from here! Out and no one from Trade Winds. Wait. To Information Desk: it's locked and he can't check representatives. Finally find guy at 3:10. Andre arrived 1 pm?? Leave airport 3:20. Pass cathedral at 3:53, to hotel at 4:15, but they have no reservation for me and know NOT the Mr. Arturo I'm supposed to see at 4:30. So I pay room with VISA, so it can be proved, and phone office to have them say they'll check. They say LAST telex was 12/2 canceling Ken and nothing after. So Andre's not here after all! Unpack, since this WILL be my room, and drink one bottle of purified water and extract MC papers and decide to see Gray Lines. Phone downstairs: no news. Phone office again and they're still checking. Morning tour returns here at 1 pm. I'm out at 5:20 to BUSY streets, but Pink Zone is almost mall-like and there MIGHT have been a few tentative cruisers. Pay $20 and get back 80-odd pesos for tomorrow's Sound and Light that'll pick me up in lobby between 1:10 and 1:20 or THERE at 1:30. OK. Around block to Refugio at 6, people eating already and guy seats me before fireplace. Quesadillas for 36P: sunflower flowers; Manchemanteles for 90P, cervesa 25P, Fonda el Refugio good but not great, but what's 208+ 22=230P? A few cents UNDER $10, AND I saw my THIRD (first, tall guy on plane; second, open-shirted starer on NEXT plane) dynamite Mexican: beautiful face and mustache and NICE strong blond muscled arms when they took their jackets off in restaurant! Because of few jacketless guys? WERE "Gentlemen" in suits there TOO? Chicken VERY tasty with potatoes and mole and chilies and pineapple and apple. Out at 7 and decide to search out Chapultepec Park's rollercoaster. Discover that sidewalks can change height by a STEP suddenly, if some storefront wants a special design---also lots of HOLES and the cars are allowed to park around corners. Lots of GRAND hotels and interesting hippie-type restaurants. Across to corner of park across HUGE roadways and impressive yellow-lit avenue to "Monument to the Boy Heroes of 1846-47." Pass Museum of Modern Art and feel perfectly safe (except for scurrying rats that "chung" into the wire-mesh fence around the zoo in their hurry to run. Zoo SMELLS fine, too, and the OTHER (Reforma) side has LOVELY topiary animals: peacocks, ape, buffalo, deer, lion, giraffe, and LOTS of others. Come to BUILDINGS and walk dark passageways and see SOLDIERS and get a JOLT from MUFFLED head peering out of a stone guard-box just inches from me when I see him. See sign "Molina del Rey" and ask someone passing by, and he says "This is near the President's Palace," and agrees it's Los Pinos. "Where do you want to go?" (in Spanish) "Montana Russa." "Over there." But THAT happens to be in a FIELD, ending against a WALL around a ROAD. Walk to entry, cross bridge, and there IS the rollercoaster across ANOTHER roadway. Walk to a bridge across the congealing highways, people even BACKING OUT ENTRANCE ways to feeder roads that are moving faster. Military block roads, too, and as I look SOUTH I see artificial fires (which I later find are REAL steel mills) and fountains, and think that's the amusement park, but cross at side of Technological Museum and walk past IT to amusement area that's CLOSED! Note hours and chat with watchman and pass lovely mosaics around park and then the fountain of Del Lago, take pictures, and walk way around JAMMED Perifico and cross an arching bridge and FINALLY get to Reforma and HUGE National Auditorium along it. Then walk till feet ache and see "Expresso Reforma" map and it starts AFTER I started and Insurgentes is about halfway along, so I wave one down and it's FREE! Fabulous blinking lights in rows above road, GREAT 4-story hotels, LOVELY rooftop duplexes with TREES. Quite a city! Out of bus and THERE'S Doral sign, stagger in, he says there's a CHANCE of clearing things up. I get upstairs about 9:30 and take shoes off and write this and put things away and ready for sleep now at 10:15, after washing face and earplugs in!