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Turmoil in Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe!

Submitted by eagle on Mon, 11/16/2020 - 19:12

Some blog notes from over the last month, which has had some turmoil for me:

You find your way, your desires, by going out there and doing. It's nonsense to think that you can think up your way in your head only. Still, you can think up a few cool ideas, and some nifty ways of going places.


You have to do, to do.

Things don't happen as expected. Maybe one can picture a straightforward sequence, but in practice things twist about wildly on the road to success.

As much as I like the Caribbean (which is approximately as much as I thought, more in some ways but less in others), I'm looking forward to seeing other regions. Which I've already noted.

I think & feel waaaay better without much noise. I can only wear earplugs or go out in the countryside so much. Wish there were a better way!

It still feels funny to me to be on a small island. Like you have your own little planet to yourself! :)


Idea: Far Enough

I'd like to go out in the countryside somewhere, in a shack, spend a few months just working. Far enough away from the traffic. I think I'd be way more productive.

Idea: A community of reclusive writers and other artists. They all stay apart, sharing each other's misery. :)

Serious fuckin' noise ordinances in place.

It would have beautiful houses and yarns (and yards), but be seriously dysfunctional.

Artists' cloister? Is that the right word?

After a while with the water going off every other day or so, it's somewhat annoying. It doesn't actually interfere much, if you stock up a bunch of water, but it reminds one of the convenience of running water.

I'm turning Caribbean! I just ate yet ANOTHER bowl of rice & beans.


Fullproof (adj.): Definitely won't fail.

The left brain says "go," the right brain says "stop."

It's OK to listen to the "go" side more often! :)

The noisiness, failures, "problems", are just how things are. Instead of complaining, getting angry, or in other ways focusing on that, focus on better ways to act.

Don't get angry, don't get even, get creative!

I've often felt congested over the years. I was thinking in terms of being near people, dogs, motors, other loud sounds, but I suppose the same word also applies to inner congestion -- nose, maybe thoughts, emotions too.

Seems to apply in large cities as well as small towns. More in some places than in others. It often makes me feel a need for exercise, going out into the country, or the like.

I think a large part of it's just the normal pressures that are there, in the environment. They come through various media -- people, dogs, motors, or whatever. But I think it's wrong or "inutile" to blame the specific direct source. Blaming the messenger. The underlying pressures are there anyways.

I like who I am, how I choose to act.

It's been extremely difficult so far, with many losses, sacrifices, and mistakes along the way. Also, of course I'm imperfect as ever. But at least I like my overall directions! :)

Idea: back hair shampoo. :)

I see an ongoing path, involving continual work while taking some pleasures as well as pains along the way.

Now I think I am getting close to having seen every street in this town.

Jejej, I think I'm addicted to decaf! :)


I've seen a few houses around here with microwaves as mailboxes!


While this place like any has its drawbacks, I like how it feels "normal." It's attractive, but a real or regular community where people reside, rather than having a large rate of tourism. I also like the latter, but wind up seeing many such places, so it's nice to have a break in a normal town.

Seems like there are always problems. I guess just keep on adapting! :)

Each place has its busy times, adapted to the weather and other factors of course. Here in Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe, seems like 11 to 12 or 1 midday is a busy time, 4 to 5 or 6 evening is a busy time, 8 to 9 or 10 evening is busy.

Grow strong, solid, sturdy, like a tree! :)

Take in food, sunlight, water, like a tree! :)

Produce, like a tree! :)



I've often been an evening or afternoon person, but I'm becoming a morning person. In part for practical reasons, by choice. My sinuses seem to do better early in the day. There's more sunlight during the day. More stuff's open. I feel more productive when I get an early start. There are some nice quiet periods early in the morning. It feels nice to time one's activities with the sun rising and setting.

I feel extremely lucky about this town (Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe), as with Guadeloupe as a country.


I like decaf! I can drink like ten cafes, but instead of going paranoid-hyperactive-insomniac-crazy, I feel normal, even tired by the end of the day! :)

"Life's too fair!" :)

Not sure if I actually believe that.

Adulthood: you start off kind of sketchy, then learn as you grow.

Idea: Cyborg cat! :)

I'm super thankful to have a job, even more so that it's flexible.

Also: earplugs.

Sometimes I make allowances for special occasions. Seems like it's often a special occasion.

Ofishally, sardines are nutritious.

You know you're in a work mode when you're eating white rice and drinking black coffee. Basically some grains with water. :)

Not the most original thought: I think that we can often have a tendency to think of "boring, ordinary" things, while hoping for some later better result. Instead, maybe it makes sense to think of the ordinary things as what we're here for, and to focus on making those the best that we can.

As a writer, I often think to myself along the lines of, "I wish that people would be quieter so that I can concentrate." I think that this is comparable to a soldier saying, "I wish that enemy soldiers wouldn't shoot at me." I don't think that writing is exactly like war, but I think that in both cases one attempts to reach one's objectives on a competitive battlefield. Again, maybe not the most original thought, but something on my mind.

I think that one of my often-made mistakes is to take things too personally. Things (problems) that aren't directed at me, can still frustrate me. I guess it makes more sense to feel the annoyance briefly, but forget about it.

Being able to manage problems can be more important than having technical skills.

Still a struggle, no matter what I try, for me to manage the disgusting distractions that interfere with work or pleasure. Still, I take it as a challenge for me to find ways to deal.

Maybe I need to develop more mental resistance to noises, distractions.

I understand intellectually that these problems pale in comparison to other issues. But emotionally they seem difficult to manage.

Also, I guess that no matter what one does there will be some degree of annoyance. Like how shoes don't fit exactly. So maybe the best one can do is to adjust one's mentality and behaviors to minimize the problems, then just go ahead and deal with the remaining issues.

Our brains seem to produce notions in us that we are at the same time super-invulnerable but also need protection. :)


Having survived a lot of crazy stuff, I feel like the "regular" crazy stuff is somewhat more manageable.



Each day is like a machine, a system. It connects with the last and the next. It has its subcomponents.


The machines (days) fit together like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. One extends into another. They're not regular shapes like squares or rectangles. I think it's therefore silly to expect days to have even starts or finishes. There's always something!

Years or seconds or lives are also like days.


I think that annoyances/frustrations may spur me more to work than desires do? The latter may make me more comfortable, complacent?

That would be consistent with some other facts. People seem to make purchases, or avoid crimes, more strongly when there's a pain or pressure.

I'm not sure about this whole adulthood thing, seems like there's lots of adjusting to things you can't do much about.

(In thick Italian-American accent) "Why's everyone talkin' about my type? Genotypin'? I'm Geno, so what about my type?!"

Idea: Like a vending machine, but instead of drinks or snacks, hot food. It can include electric heating elements, or a microwave.

Probably exists somewhere, but I don't think I've seen it.

I think maybe caffeine and alcohol are bad matches for my body? They're addictive which I don't handle well. They produce anxiety and depression which I'm already prone to. Maybe they have their uses, and are more suitable for other people, but I think they don't mesh with me that well.

Imagine if there were a drug that made you feel good (an upper), with no side effects, and it were free and available anywhere. I think that exercise is the closest thing to that.

I find breadfruit trees funny. They're huge, as are their fruits. The fruits taste like starches, not fruits. The trees produce so much, they don't seem to mind if animals devour their fruits.

Sugar seems way more potent now than I'd thought (or than society gives credit for). I just ate a huge amount of generic nutella (super delicious)! Now I feel high. Giving kids sugar seems like giving kids cocaine (which also acts on dopamine).

You change through the progress of your efforts. Each day/week/year brings a different you.

Some things I've been working on for years seem to be nearing "completion." Feels stupendous, if also somewhat frustrating.

Bringing together our different individual elements, to produce strong wholes! :)

I wonder what country I'll be in a year from now? :)

I'm guessing… Uruguay?! :)

In the shopping mall of countries, where do you go?

From the outside, before or after, things can look simpler than they are. From the inside of a process, things can look more complex than they are. Having both views (in & out) can provide balance.

Conscientiousness is a super-tool. And to some extent you can choose to develop it! :)

We should say thank you to your problems.

(Often our problems produce our best results.)

Maybe only another couple of months here in Capesterre?

It's important to clean things so that you can get them dirty. :)

I find it somewhat disturbing that there are people, perhaps the majority, in these small towns, who have probably seen far less of the town even after living here for decades than I have in a few months. I understand it, though, it's not like I went out of my way to see so much of places before I started traveling longer-term.

Anything affects the brain: food, drink, drugs, experiences, water.

Some things take a while, but do eventually happen! :)

If a bicycle could think about itself, I don't think it'd get bored of doing so. :)

"I can't believe I'm fuckin' goin' around the world!!!!! :)"

My thoughts to myself while going through some notes.

Many of my ideas seem to turn out way incorrect. I guess it makes sense to go out there to test ideas. :)

We don't get to control everything in our environments. But at least we get to control our behaviors by-and-large.

Color in the map!

Looking at a map of the continents now looks like a manageable, ongoing challenge!!!!! :)

Now appreciating caffeine more, but not using it as much. Is it a miracle drug?

You have to fuckin' deal with situations. It's naive but normal to feel disturbance, but in practice it's more effective to manage the response, take some losses or some leaves, then carry forth, instead of going crazy.

Fiction often seems unrealistically positive. The protagonist overcomes the adversaries. Non-fiction often seems unrealistically negative. If it bleads, it leads. Games seem more realistic. It's highly uncertain, you can win or lose, it depends on your skill level.

While each person may have to take individual responsibility in order to achieve goals, I still think that we can offer more assistance than just saying "it's your responsibility." I think we can teach those we care about some specifics about HOW to take responsibility, like delineating some common areas of responsibility (finance, health, relationships), as well as recommending some techniques (regular work regardless of conditions, taking risks).

I want to act creatively!!!!! :)

I can't count how many times I've been fired, lost, kicked out of establishments or town, thought I was going to die, or the like. Somehow after a while they seem to blur away. :)

I'm now feeling stuck (again). At first a huge relief to find a stable place here, have a chance to catch up on so much stuff. Now, with the Coronavirus still running, I also have a few packages in the mail that I'm waiting on. I want to go on, but have to stay. Frustrating!

A bunch of stuff has evolved dramatically for me over the last month. After some serious struggles, I feel stronger but also vulnerable. Hungry to go again. Much better generally!

Rock & Roll!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)


More Capesterrian Thoughts!

Submitted by eagle on Sat, 10/17/2020 - 19:16


I think that we humans often think naively that there will be some idealistic future time, unlike our present problems. It doesn't match the statistical evidence, and even if it did there would be way too much variability. However, it still seems possible to work to produce somewhat consistently better outcomes, appreciating the positives while using the negatives.


I now consider caffeine and alcohol as serious psychoactive substances. I'm OK with using them now and then, but for specific purposes (like becoming more alert or relaxed). I think it's risky to consider these substances as regular drinks, even though many societies do. Anyways, there are plenty of tasty decaffeinated coffees, non-alcoholic beers, and other drinks. Alcohol in particular kills many people. Caffeine seems much safer, but still can mess you up.


I'm liking having so many days in a row in one place, indoors! So convenient!!!!!


The rainy weather makes me feel sensitive, emotional. Can be pleasant on a weekend. Not super conducive for a Monday morning.


One can accumulate work or other tasks, as a backlog. Some tasks get delayed. Having a few projects ongoing allows you to do other productive activities while waiting, instead of losing precious time.


In travel, writing, & life, it seems better not to rush. I've often acted impatiently. I think that one can do better by taking things slowly in many (but not all) cases.


So far I don't think decaf interferes w/ my sleep.


We should be more tolerant of our failures (diseases, lack of intelligence, emotional insensitivity, and the like). Our genes have only had so much time to become functional, and they work in a difficult environment. Our cultures, too.


Psychology: People have a bunch of decent mental states, which they can use for fun or profit, then they decline.


"Finish the ride!" (even though it's all the way around the planet). :)


I'm working on my conscientiousness, as well as to reduce my neuroticism. Difficult tasks!


Conscientiousness seems to have numerous benefits, neuroticism numerous costs, in many areas such as health, work, relationships.


So far, establishing more or stricter requirements for myself, as well as sterner self-talk, seems maybe to contribute to conscientiousness. Still haven't found much for reducing neuroticism, maybe just reminders to focus on the facts.


I feel like I've reached a threshold here in Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe. I've now seen many (but not all) of the roads -- it's a considerbaly bigger town that I thought. I've eaten at many (but not all) of the eateris, shopped at many of the stores. I'm also starting to feel somewhat more like a resident, less like a visitor. Also, starting to think of moving on. Still planning to ride out (or not ride out, but still sit out, as it were) the rest of Coronavirus here.


Like the rest of Guad, I feel like it's beautiful here, often restful, a chance to catch up on many things that I'd put off or been unable to attend to while traveling.


Childitis (n.): Adulthood.


I feel like I have fifteen different things that I'm working on or waiting on. I know that things often become messy. I feel like I'm still struggling with many of the things that I often write about. I guess that's how it goes. You often deal with recurring problems.


Maybe I should act with more focus?


I'm confident that some of these things will work out as I want, but it sure takes patience! :)


There are a lot of false hopes, but there are also some true hopes. I think it's worth dealing with the disappointments along the way, to arrive at rewards, while also striving to have a decent time along the way.


There's always more work you can do, but there's not always enough work you can do? :)


Patientez! :)


I've tried adding various fats to foods again recently, now they seem too oily. I guess my tastes have changed.


Somewhat slow while here in my adopted town, Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe.


You can get a lot of mileage out of a few cubic centimeters of rubbery nerve tissue!


Also, it can get a lot of mileage out of you!


I'm feeling more Caribbean, I've been eating rice & beans, other such food. Before I went through a French food burst. You can combine the two here!


Some small birds come by, to eat my food. They've picked away at bananas, bread, rice. They're kind of cute, and clean up a bit of mess.


The first wearable pair of Eagle Eyes Goggles broke. I had somewhat fractured a part that had too thin of a design. Gradually it wore away, then finally snapped off. Now I'm wearing the second pair, which has a slightly different design, and is even more comfortable!


Keep at it anyways!!!!! :)


Thoughts from Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe!

Submitted by eagle on Thu, 10/08/2020 - 13:34

A few older notes, before some more recent thoughts.



I don't have any oil or butter or other fatty ingredients around. So I've cooked up a bunch of stuff lately without any. It tastes surprisingly good. I thought it would be bland. Maybe I'm compensating with more salt?

Update: Now have plenty of fatty ingredients. I still like them, but actually feel that they can be too oily now. Not sure if my tastes have changed (over the short or long term), or if I'm just noticing it now after the withdrawal.


Jejej, here in the Caribbean, the bank closes at 4:20. :)


Funny place. The AC here makes the room hotter, and the water doesn't work when it rains. :)

In a town with "Water" in its name, right near all the sources where they bottle water, in the rainy season, the water goes off regularly. I heard that they're redoing the piping throughout the entire country, so I guess it makes sense.


Funny how neurotic, psychotic are insults in the world of psychology/neuroscience. :)


Could you extract DNA from e.g. the wood in a sofa? Or would it all have desiccated/been removed?


A day is like a life or the entire universe. It starts off quiet, goes through some noises of increasing complexity, then quiets down again.


I'm working to have a more positive attitude. Part of an ongoing project. :)

Update: I'm now working to have a more negative attitude in some ways. :)


To get desirable results, you often have to go through undesirable processes.


The tomatoes and bananas have become two of my favorite Guadeloupe products!

Also solid: lettuce, root vegetables, hot peppers, coffee, other agroproducts.


Idea: photoshop marketing packages for various illicit substances. :)


Another idea: photoshop logos like those red/white/blue silhouette sports logos, but with sex acts instead of sports. :)


I've felt way better in my body lately. Even in rainy weather that before made me feel stiff, sore, congested, I'm feeling at least not much pain. Perhaps from having taken some aspirin a while ago, if the positive effects (less inflammation) last?


Staying on in Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe. It's a nice town. Decent place to get stuck during the Coronavirus pandemic.



I've tried some fruits, spices, and other foods that I'd never even heard of before. Some more delicious than others. A benefit I like about travel!


Beautiful country. I still think that Guadeloupe seems wetter than other Caribbean countries I've visited. I think it technically has a different climate (monsoon?). Hills, mountains, plants, surrounded by the sea. Also, the architecture is quite attractive, as in other Caribbean countries.


I've gone on a few runs lately, which I hadn't done for a while. Feels different not to have so much stuff like a backpack and bike, as I'd become accustomed to carrying around everywhere.


Rock on!!!!! :)


Trial & Error!

Submitted by eagle on Wed, 09/16/2020 - 16:27

Water's off again!

Is it going off every other night? That'd be weird. There was a huge rain storm yesterday, and rain storms most other days. It's still raining now! Maybe it's just a poor service? Maybe I'll start collecting rainwater! :)


Bit of a health scare yesterday. After not eating much but largely getting by on coffee and sugar for around a day, while waiting for the storm to pass so that I could go shopping, felt some pain and weakness in my left arm and chest. I think a mix of low nutrients, high caffeine, the effects of the weather system, and my already somewhat tense veins, plus applying weight disproportionately on that side for an extended period while working.

You know you've drunk enough caffeine when the mosquitoes seem slow.

I've been feeling better on and off as the weather has improved somewhat. Also, I tried drinking some more coffee and tea, and didn't feel worse; if anything, I felt better. So I think it's just my body's reaction to the cloudy, rainy, stormy weather.

(Since then the problem's largely gone away with the weather, I think it's my body's response to this storm weather.)

After months (I think) of rework, finally ordered the next round (second ever) of Eagle Eyes Goggles!!!!!

Looking forward to seeing what they're like! :)


Seems like the water is indeed on only every other day.

I like to see each task or activity that we do as a package containing challenge and pleasure and reward.


I tried cooking up some of the root vegetables and fishes that I purchased recently. One of the roots, which I think is called ñame, tastes delicious (if somewhat plain). I think I've had it at a few Caribbean eateries, and not liked it that much because it was dry and bland. I made it in a spicy soup, which seems to work way better for my tastes. I also used a local root, whose name I forgot. So far tastes not as appealing to me, but I'll try some more. Some root vegetables can be mildly toxic, not sure about any of the ones I used. Feeling decent for now anyways! :)

Wrong again! Water's back on, same day.

(Since then the water's remained largely on.)


Roots and fish soup with hot peppers, onions, garlic, salt & pepper, allspice (? - bois d'inde - yes, allspice), tasty!


After eating some more of the local root, I like it somewhat more. I still think it has a somewhat unpleasant aftertaste.


Looks like the Coronavirus is still going strong! Wouldn't even be allowed into the US if I wanted to go now, if I'm reading things right.


Maybe I'm stuck here for a while? Sounds fine!


Seems like a weird situation, with some advantages. Stuck in the French Caribbean! :)


I can still go to the Democratic Republic of the Congo!


It's kind of crazy. We live in a time when we have machines that work millions of times better than our biological brains and bodies evolved to be able to work, but we still complain! :)


So it looks like "ñame" is actually the same as yam. I already knew yams, but they use way different varieties or species here. Apparently it's unsafe raw, but usually safe cooked.


My reaction to reading about Japanese food: "ew, weird."

My reaction to reading about Indian food: "mm, yum!"


I'm feeling better overall than I was around a year ago, I think.


Traveling's difficult, as the etymology (as in "travails") indicates. Still, it frees you up. Also provides plenty of opportunities to grow socially, culturally, physiologically, psychologically.


As much as I like some places, after a while I feel like I've seen enough. Then there's more reward in trying different places.

After seeing much of the Caribbean, I'm also somewhat exhausted again, but this time in much stronger condition as far as logistics. Instead of having a beach bum break, I'm having a work camp break!


Pro Tip: There's no hangover if you drink in the morning! :)


I'm becoming much more of a sour-taste person. I used to avoid many sour foods, except as a brief refresher. Now I'm becoming far more of a sour fanatic. I think it started or increased with the vinaigrettes that are common in the Caribbean. Also, I think that it's extremely refreshing in this hot, humid climate. Now I'm even drinking straight vinegar! :)


Does anyone make deep-fried whole potatoes? I'm not sure if they'd cook all the way through, but if chicken does then wouldn't a whole potato? I'd like to try a deep-fried whole potato.


Go on!

Capesterre Belle Eau, Guadeloupe!

Submitted by eagle on Sun, 08/30/2020 - 18:06

I'm covered in war wounds!

You really get to know yourself, inside and out, while going through challenges.

Keep going!

Eagle Gamma @ Capesterre Belle Eau !

Feeling much better after another night's sleep!

Continuing to heal.

The losses seeming trivial in comparison to the gains!

Keep at it!

I'm still hungry, a few days after descending from the mountain! I keep on eating, then becoming hungry again almost right away.

Sure seems much easier to work on a laptop than to survive brutal outdoors challenges!

Carrying on!

Hm. After leaving my old, supposedly dead phone plugged in, it seems to power on. Shows 1% battery, but staying on longer than expected. Seems to function roughly normally. Doesn't connect to USB properly, I think one of the metal pins broke off while I was trying to charge it in frustration in the rain in the mountain. Now manually copying out some audio files, a somewhat painful process. Maybe still works?

Oh, phone went off. Maybe it just had some extra juice in it. Ah well.

Tough while lately, but also tons of desirables!

Keep at it!

I'm healing more. Starting to feel like a mix of normal with recovering patient.

I think that life's like that. You're healing from one adventure, preparing for another.

It's another beautiful morning here. Woke up early, after an early night's sleep. They started setting up for some jazz last night, but I must've fallen asleep before the show.

It's tough to complain about things not working according to plan, when the alternatives can also work at least as well!

Take survivable chances! :)

Another idea for marketing for earplugs: an ad in which they're shown as comparable to a woman's nipples. :)

Each adventure that we go through, we take on new lessons, capacities, traits. Yet, we also retain our previous selves.

Weather turned out not so great. Now I'm happy to stay here!

Looks like there aren't many remaining places where I'd want to stay a while and work, here in Guadeloupe. As such, considering even staying in this hotel for much of the rest of the Coronavirus!

My mountain wounds are healing. I can now move almost normally.

Looking up Venezuela (for work). The first suggested searches involve the current situation there. I guess I'm not the only one keeping tabs!

Fruits work surprisingly well on sandwiches, especially with cheese!

Finally catching up on these notes. Above from St. Claude, recovery. Below after riding to next location!


I'm basically ready to leave Guadeloupe. If the Coronavirus were over, I would head to the remaining islands that I want to see in this country, then continue to Dominica.

Made it to the next town, Capesterre Belle Eau. I think I'm likely to stay here for at least a few weeks, maybe even months, until the Coronavirus seems over.

I've seen and done what I want to in Guadeloupe. Also had a huge chance to repair (myself and my stuff). Basically just want to hop to a few remaining small islands here, then do the remainder of the Caribbean that I'm aiming to see. Still, difficult to predict how long this'll take.

There are always challenges. It's important for us to manage challenges and work towards goals. Complaining about challenges or getting too wrapped up or lost in them, instead of doing what one can then moving on, can cause even more harms.

It seems difficult to make same-day or day-before reservations. Understandably Airbnb hosts have difficulty dealing with late requests. There aren't many hotels around these small towns (there isn't even one here). Also, many places don't have street addresses and it can be difficult to find the place, among other problems making arrangements. I like the flexibility of being able to find a place whenever, but it seems somewhat impractical. I'm thinking of aiming for more advance planning, and as mentioned previously for somewhat longer stays. Would probably reduce the costs in renting.

My reasoning concerning the Coronavirus is that, while I think that they've technically reopened the borders, I don't want to get into a difficult situation getting stuck or not allowed into another country with all of the other Coronavirus difficulties. I've had enough problems crossing Caribbean borders before the Coronavirus.

Even after drinking huge amounts of water, I'm still thirsty!

There are some common patterns within countries, and some among many countries. These make things seem consistent, which can be logistically easier but emotionally more complicated.

I'm going to aim for at least a few weeks, maybe even a few months, here. It's considerably longer than I've spent in any place since -- oh, actually not that long ago, P-a-P. My priority now is on work, while the Coronavirus works its way out.

The place where I'm staying now, an apartment in Capesterre Belle Eau, Guadeloupe, covers the entire top floor of a building. On one side, I can see the large volcanic mountain where I came from. On the other side, I can see the sea where I'm going. Poetic!

I feel like things have changed considerably for me here in Guadeloupe. When I arrived, I was having difficulties getting anywhere, with much of my stuff broken. Still having numerous difficulties with much broken stuff, but now I'm consistently renting nice places, replacing or repairing things. In part I think the result of months, years, decades of working towards goals. Also, trying different, more practical approaches. Plus luck.

BTW, having some instant milk lately (I often don't drink milk due to the lactose). Tastes more like cow than fresh milk. Apparently the powder process preserves the flavors. Cow aroma particles.

An idea: mix water, sugar, salt, vegetable oil, corn starch, soy protein isolate, and a vitamin & mineral supplement. Probably the cheapest and grossest way to get a complete, balanced diet! :)

Paying much lower rent here than at other place in this country (Guadeloupe). The first night was expensive, it was through an agency which appears to take a large cut. Now dealing directly.

Microwave broke, so I'm cooking with gas for the first time in a while. Lentils, potatoes, many herbs & spices, coffee, milk, sugar. Yum!

It's stressful dealing with finding a place on a regular basis. More comfortable to have a place.

The small town where I'm now staying is called Capesterre Belle Eau. Even though "Eau" means "Water" in French, the place where I'm staying has had the water out on the first and third days out of three!

The place is surrounded by the sea and the sources where they bottle water, and it's raining!

At least the water is back on now.

Feels nice to have a place for a somewhat longer while. I can relax more, cook. There are also benefits to traveling often, like frequently seeing new places. Still, I'm sore, tired, happy to have a while in one place.

Keep on going!


La Soufriere, Nearly Dying!

Submitted by eagle on Fri, 08/14/2020 - 15:19

After a pleasant pause, I went on an adventure up la Soufriere, a volcanic mountain with a tropical forest. It was a spontaneous morning-of decision. I nearly died! Here are some scattered notes.


(Photo gallery!)


Finally, for the first time after my ride out of town, my foot feels better. I had stepped on some sharp plant. Now I feel like I can walk on both feet again, at least somewhat better.

I feel like it's been a topsy-turvy while.

I suppose I often feel that way, in part due to my emotions and in part due to events.

I'm becoming increasingly anti-noise as I age.

I have to leave this place by the end of the week (there's another guest who reserved the place over the weekend). I'm not yet sure exactly when I go.

Next, down to the nearby town. Then, probably take some ferries to other islands in Guadeloupe.

I'm thinking of seeing some but not all of the islands, then taking the ferry to the next country, Dominica!

I don't want to go there until the Coronavirus is over, however.

Maybe a waiting game, to see how long until it's normal to cross international borders again.

I think I'm feeling much better in body & mind without coffee, or much sugar, acid, and other such stuff. I feel calmer throughout the day, happier. Instead of spikes.

I'm going for more consistent work.

A huge blister on my foot from where I stepped on a sharp plant, finally broke!


Things not working out.

Two Airbnbs failed.

Phone and laptop not working, perhaps due to overheating.


Laptop seems to work!


My old phone seems dead. I think I broke it while trying to charge. I was using it as my exposable phone with a bunch of installed stuff. I managed just to sync the photos and videos. Probably some voice notes and other stuff that didn't get backed up. Not a big deal, I already have another phone that actually works here!


Bike basically works! A reflector fell off, which I kept, which I'll see if I can reattach. A sticker came off. The seat fell off. I didn't have the exact right tool to fix it. I collected the seat as we packed up things for the last effort back, but it fell out of a hole in the bag. Not that big of a deal, it was uncomfortable anyways.

Kontan wè zot

(Glad to see you)


Got my life back!


Some chocolate survived! Also I think some peanuts that some people gave me, and a few other foods. I think some other chocolate and other foods fell out of the bag on the way back down.


People often complain about hospital food. At the hospital in the French Caribbean, the food was mixed. There were some delicious green beans. Also, some large root vegetables whose name I don't know (ñame?). There was some grated food that I couldn't definitively identify (cabbage?). The salad dressing tasted like it may have been expired. There was some delicious gouda cheese and butter! Also some tasty rolls. There was a pasta dish, which I think was their take on mac & cheese, which was quite disappointing. Also, some yogurt, cherry jam, and water. All in all, quite tasty!


My glasses seem even more scratched up than before. I think from trying to clean them with various materials and probably scratching the lenses with small rocks. Not that big a deal. I'm in the process of working on the replacements (Eagle Eyes Goggles) anyways!



La Soufriere, Guadeloupe!

I'm extremely thankful to have made it. As harsh as it was, and costly, at least I survived. I'm aiming to be smarter and stronger going forward. Fewer crazy mountain chances. A few weeks or months of more serious work and less travel. Recuperate!


The mountain is called la Soufriere - appropriate name!


Food never tastes so good as when you're hungry! Like, after several days up a tropical forest volcano, in the rain, working hard, with not enough food!


Feels great to get back down to Earth!


I like things more now, and am feeling more tolerant. To a large extent I think those effects wear off the farther one gets from a life-or-death experience. Still, something to appreciate!


Right now there's a palm tree under the light blue sky and white clouds. Looks beautiful!


I'm excited to spend a while resting, getting better.



Eagle Gamma @ la Soufriere, Guadeloupe!


Seems like everything that could have gone wrong, did. Almost. I cut myself, the bike fell apart, the rain came (making things much more difficult as I became progressively waterlogged), the GPS and charging port on my phone failed.


No serious injuries, thankfully!

I have some chafing on my arm, from wet clothing rubbing against my skin. I have a somewhat deep cut on my index finger, from grabbing an open sardine can while reaching for food (I wanted to carry back all my garbage, so I still had the can). My feet are sore from walking, as is most of my body from pushing and pulling stuff.


I was taking some stuff a few meters (around ten to a hundred), then returning for more, then more. Scrambling through the trees, up and down cliffs that often seemed too hard. As my stuff took on more water, it became heavier, and I had to take fewer things. Also, I sometimes went ahead on scouting missions, to see what was ahead. By the worst of it, I was doing like nine trips over each part of the path. Getting to know it better! Each time felt somewhat more familiar, but still difficult.

At least I'm somewhat more diligent now!


A few times, including at the end, I think I wound up on wrong areas, walking along the river bottom instead of on a trail.


Kept going through much. Didn't realize I had some of those capacities in me. This ranks among the more difficult things I've ever done. In terms of psychological, physiological, and other considerations.


I'm in some pain, but it's the kind of pain that feels somewhat pleasant. You can almost relax into it, feeling the healing.


As I was on the way back, having decided that it seemed too dangerous to carry on, I got back to the river crossing. There, I encountered a group of guys who were coming from back where I'd started. They gave me a tasty sandwich, and offered assistance. After some talking, and after I'd lifted my stuff back up from the river onto the trail, I agreed to go with them. They disassembled the bike, each carrying part. In a rush, I left behind a few things, which were old and unnecessary anyways. We walked quickly back to the base. It took like an hour or so, to cover what would have probably taken me two days!


I guess I have some repairs and replacements to do, of my stuff and my body!


Even before going up the mountain, I was having problems. An Airbnb that I'd requested to book, turned out to be unavailable. I tried to reserve another, but it was also unavailable. Wound up camping out.


Now it's finally cool, would've been a nice weekend ride, but I think I need to rest up some more.


Things often go differently than one had planned. It's important to realize that our ideals and plans are just that, and do not reflect how things will actually transpire. As such, we have to respond to the situations as they unfold.


My glasses are so scratched up that I can hardly see through them. Just put on my backup pair, some glasses from a few years ago. I can see again!


I think it's important to move on.

A couple of years ago or so, when I was considering whether to leave Miami for the Caribbean islands, I felt unsure for a while. Looking back several times over recent months, I've consistently felt glad to have left. As much as I often miss Miami, I'm happy to see these other places. I think that the experiences have been worth the sacrifices!


Some lessons:

  • Find ways to survive!
  • Work with other people!
  • Carry backups!


Looking back at some photos and videos, that was quite scary!


Along the way, many people told me that it was impossible. Also, many people wished me "courage", which is a common thing to say here. Maybe stupid to do these activities, but also rewarding!


The volcano at the top was closed off, because of toxic fumes.


There was a sulphur smell. On the way back, I was so hungry that it reminded me of eggs and made me want to eat!


I'm again humbled by an adventure!


So many things to do!


Keep on going!


In the ambulance, when I asked not to receive the blood sugar test because I dislike needles, the paramedic issuing it noted that I'd just come down from days in the mountain in much worse conditions, but was afraid of a small needle! Funny but true.


Hard to describe how great it feels to get back into a safe hotel after just about dying!


Now for a break!



Back to safety, in Guadeloupe!