I just re-surfaced.

I learned about the breadth of land, the sheer veil of dust that covers your skin, with the right combination of time and wind. (Shhh: There are secrets all around us.)

In wine country: On the bumpy, unpaved dirt road, en route to Chateau Camou in Baja. We first encounter a small, abandoned, single-story casa blanca in ruins. We are not supposed to stop here, so we do.

Separating two lines of the barbed wire fence, we crouch and step through.

No doors or glass in the windows. Four rooms. Sculptural barbed wire in knots and knobby branches across the floor. No roof.

Who would want to sleep here, build a home here? One moves through the disappearing house like a spirit. The spirit’s real fear is to remember too much, destroying the world with her memory.

Still, there’s relief in the clarity of the house’s vision: the soul does not disappear when the building crumbles.

Improvisation is a sequence of things that could happen, the weaving of impulse and choice. In musical terms, a wrong note might be repeated and emphasized, so as to subvert the song’s own structure. Listen: This is the sound of the sand and twigs, snapping beneath your footsteps.

When the road curves toward the left and ends, we have reached Chateau Camou.  A friendly man opens the gate for us to enter. The building is stately, a fortress of passing-through, a manor of drunken spirits.

It makes no difference what’s behind the closed doors in the corridor. It makes no difference what is beyond the vaulted ceilings.

Here, nothing can be saved or stored, only tasted.

Meanwhile, in the back of the building, Lalo is on duty. Behind the Degustacion de Vino he sleeps, dreaming of a world without tourists.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9.22.05