Arrived at the Krabi wat about 7:30am and took some time to see the caves again and walk the forest on a “break the spider’s webs with your face because you’re the first dummy to walk around today” routine. I used to do the same dumb thing riding the mountain bike in Florida and Hawaii through the woods… I’d have spider webs all over my face and spiders down my back, in my hair. Krabi is such a beautiful place that the spiders are almost negligible.
Spiders in Thailand are nothing to mess with though. Here’s one I saw 2 days ago at a small cave…
There’s maybe 200 steps to see the caves, 100 up, over the hill, and 100 down into the valley to see the caves, back up 100 and down 100 to sea-level. I then go load up at the convenience mart on food. They have little that I like so I get some of those raisin breads in plastic and 3 of the white bread with green pudding stuff on the top. I bought 2 small bags of peanuts on the walk to the wat for 5b each. I found bananas at a roadside stand and bought 6 small “apple-bananas” as we call them in Hawaii, for 10 baht. Expensive, oh well.
I start up the 1,237 steps that lead to the top of the mountain here in Krabi, and the Chedi and Buddhas. I hear tourists yelling above me and I’m only 80 steps into the climb. Rocks start flying over the hill and more tourists screaming. A brick hits a few yards in front of me and I recognize that it’s not quite time to go up the mountain, the MONKEYS ARE RESTLESS!
Just as I realize it’s the nutty monkeys, two of the bastards come around a rock and grab the 2 liter water bottle from my hand and rip it open with their teeth – all within striking distance. I don’t strike, I’m a meditator today, today I just watch and laugh… thinking about the bamboo stick I’m going to find to whack these twisted thieving human rejects with. I hear a girl still screaming and look up once more to see her wearing a monkey attached to her chest and trying to get into the purse and bag she’s holding above her head.
I think for a couple seconds about giving them back 80 steps of the hill. I decide on a retreat. We all do. Rocks are still flying over the hill. The monkeys grabbed everything the first group ahead of me brought. All the fruit, offerings to Buddha, water bottles and almost a purse. I go buy some more water. 3 small bottles. “30 baht”, she says. WHAT? 10 baht for a small water? She confirms. I shake my head thinking – they’re robbing me at the temple.
I relax a bit, watch a girl with her mom that dragged her to the temple to talk to the monk – probably she was a bad girl, she’s embarrassed and her mom is a bit angry. The monk is very friendly.
I head back up the mountain.
The monkeys are sitting like ducks – yet I don’t strike. They are picking each other clean of mites, ticks, fleas, whatever they have – and eating them. Guess they had enough of the tourists’ food for a while.
I walk by, almost stepping over them. They virtually ignore me. I walk up and up and up. I stop a couple times when I see a long section lit up by the sunshine. The sun is wicked hot in the am. It’s now about 8:30am.
I make it to the top and I’m sweating hard. I’m the first one up for the day and I drink some of the cold water from the cooler. Then I take some of the warm / un-cooled water and douse my shirt with it – ringing it out. I put it on and cool enough. I walk around, scout for meditation spots and shoot some video. Sorry, video upload will need to wait until I’m at a broadband shop, as it’s around 40 megs and I don’t want to shrink it and lose quality.
I choose a spot facing the Southwest mountains and sit down for a few hours. Meditation has changed for me since I stopped 10 years ago. It seems that whenever I meditate now there is not really a need to focus on the breath. No need to totally relax… it just comes. It’s there almost instantly. I experience a “no-thought” state just about as soon as I sit. I found that I can do it anytime I choose for as long as I choose. It’s strange.
When I started to meditate – by focusing on the breath with eyes closed and sitting cross-legged usually, I would start by focusing on the breath. Eventually the mind calmed and I’d lose feeling in extremities and then whole-body and then I’d progress through jhana when the state of no-thought occured.
Now- it’s always no thought if I choose. Strange. I am usually not in many levels of jhana anymore, unless I choose to start focusing on the breath.
Today I did a little focus on the breath, but the pain in my back was overpowering. I have not meditated in any serious way for about 10 years. My back just wasn’t ready to sit in that position for the few hours that I did.
I stopped meditating about 3:30 pm and called it a day. As I was eating down n the 3rd level a guy walked by with some toilet paper. I told him, they locked the door to the toilet. No toilet. He started to walk back, I encouraged him to give it a try on the walkway down below – but to be careful as he’d be visible from 2nd and 1st level to unsuspecting tourists. He gave it his best shot apparently because when he came back up he was rubbing his belly and saying, “oh, ohhhhhhh” joking around. HAHHA. They DO have a sense of humor in Russia too I suppose.
I walked around and took some photos and thought maybe I’d return tomorrow if I took some paracetemol or some other pain-killer that didn’t make me tired, wired, dizzy, or weird.
I walked down and literally stepped OVER the monkey tales that lined the steps from about steps 100 to 30.
A good day, I spent much of the time in the “PRESENT” which is where I hoped to be today.
Now, posting what might be my last blog here for a bit as I’ve sold this computer and the phone I use as a modem to connect online.
The rest of my posts will be from the internet cafe before I leave Thailand – and will probably be lacking photos and videos since I can’t edit them with the software I prefer.