Saturday, February 28, 2009
I'm at the Sabie River Sun's restuarant: sitting outside, under the deck, right next to a magnificent Lowveld garden I can feel the faint mist of therain on my arm and face. Breathing in deep the fresh humid air of these lower altitudes, I'm ecstatic to be alive and considering new options and directions. And the Boschendal Blanc de Noir was great...
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Monday, February 09, 2009
Iyer says that travel writing, more than any other kind of writing, has to transport you, has to teach you about the world, has to imnform you, and, ideally, has to take you into deeper and deeper questions about yourself and the world. He says the writer's job, as Milan Kundera once told Philip Roth, is to see the world as a question. And travel writing has to hold your attention, first, and then take you into a dialogue between yourself and the world that tells you something new about both and compels you more powerfully than any other dialogue around.
As thunder richochets off 'Imemeza' - which in Seswati aptly means 'place of shouting' - the amphitheatre-like mountain behind my house, I'm reading Pamuk's 'Istanbul: Memories and the City'. But the books piled high on my bedside table, an old zinc tpped beehive box stolen from a forest near White River, encourages dabbling.
One that I've read before but have returned for inspiration, to hold up at a different angle and for different reasons in the half light, is Natalie Goldberg's 'Writing Down the Bones'. In the introduction she lists four of Jack Kerouac's essentials for prose:
- Accept loss forever
- Be submissive to everything, open, listening
- No fear or shame in the dignity of your experience, language, and knowledge
- Be in love with your life
Now that my arm is lame from being leaned on, that the gelatin reek of the dog's chewed hoof has become overpowering, and while the rain still slaps down on the concrete just outside my wide open window, I'm putting out my passionate, velvet red-shaded bedside lamp.
Sunday, February 08, 2009
Life could not be better and I wouldn't want to be living anywhere else... except, perhaps, the Karoo.