The room with the red wall. Everything is backwards. Again. My world, my thoughts, feelings and desired orbiting around me in reverse. Again. Everybody walks backwards, talks backwards, thinks backwards and drives in reverse. I am motionless watching this reversed parody of the world as I know it. The red wall smiles at me. Strobe lights appear from nowhere and cast their spell inside this little room. The music starts pulsating backwards. It’s the only thing that makes sense in reverse.
I want to punch the wall till I bleed. I want to paint the red wall again with blood. I want to bleed and let the pain become pleasure and let the pleasure caress my brain. I am in a fit of rage. Or is it ecstasy? I keep punching the walls until my knuckles are sore. My fist is weak, but my brain forgets to stop punching. I want to shed my skin, rip myself away from me. But how can I, when I can’t even shed my shadow?
Love turns to lust turns to something darker. Slow motion dreams in reverse. Where am I going? Or where am I coming from? What am I running from?
I hear his voice for the first time. Piercing my brain, he tells me what I want to hear, and I listen quietly, as the red wall looms in front of me. The paint begins to drip turning a shade darker. My mind blocks out everything except his voice. He tells me how to be, who to be, what to say, what to do. I am in a trance and I suffer my desires.
I sacrifice my mind to the unknown knowing well that it will not result in good. I split myself apart, until I don’t recognize myself and I can’t be put back together. I split myself until all I’m are shards of glass put together to resemble a cracked image. Who am I now? What do I believe? Where is my voice of reason? Now I see the world through a cracked glass. A cracked world in reverse. There is no turning back now.
The dark recess which I call home begs me to come back but I am too far gone.
I didn’t know what to do when I looked into the mirror and saw another face in there. It wasn’t my face, it was someone else’s. There in the darkness staring back me was the face of a stranger. You. I expected to see my face in the mirror, but what should have been my face had been replaced. That sight fucked my head up. I thought I was dreaming. My heart skipped a few beats in initial shock. I looked at myself again. But it wasn’t me staring back at me. It was you. Your eyes boring into mine, just like my eyes bore into your eyes, looking for an answer.
You. The stranger.
What do I do now? I’m afraid. But, do I run in fear or let my curiosity take the better of me and stay? Curiosity killed the cat. But I’m no pussy. I stay. All I see is your face. The questions run inside my head, leaving dusty thoughts unsettled. Who are you? Where am I? What the fuck is happening?!
Why can’t I see my face? I ask you. You ask me the same question. You close your eyes and open them, as I do the same. Where is my face? Are you my face? Am I you? Is this really me? What if it is? Then who am I? Who have I been living as for so long? Who did I see to perceive myself as me? Where did I create the image that is me?
What is my face?
Am I the person in the mirror? Is the mirror real?
Am I you?
What if I was in the mirror all along? And through the mirror was the real world where you are, and I believed all along that I’m in the real world? Is my reflection the reality, or am I the reflection? If I was the reflection, how did my life feel real? Was it real? If this felt real, how real would reality feel? Would I feel everything I’m numb to now? Would I feel pain.. love.. pleasure.. faith…? Would a step into reality through the looking glass ebb away the cold numbing winds embracing me? Will I feel the warmth? Would I hear what I long to hear but which I was never meant to? Would I see everything I am blind to? Would I feel.
But I don’t. Reality doesn’t feel so real.
I hear nothing. I see nothing. I feel.. I feel empty. Like I did before. On the other side. Is nothing different?. Am I inside two identical parallel universes? Two identical organisms inside two different images.What is real now, when the two sides to this story, are the same? Am I the mask? Am I the face?
Am I real? Am I empty?
I am. I am empty.
After all, I am my own reflection. How real could I be?
What have I become?
Another product of my own insanity, a conception of synthetic redemption, an idea progressed within my whims?
A new divide I created within, to make sense of the infinite futility that lies inside. Disconnecting each thought from the next, I separated my mind, picking out the thoughts, exploring them, developing them further. I progressed myself to create a conception of a whole new side which lay hidden for a long time. I awoke the demon that rested peacefully, occasionally stirred by a random thought. This progress to shatter the silence and break the psychological barriers that trapped me was a breath of fresh air. Finding new things, new ideas, and new emotions gave meaning to a life seduced by repetition. This was my adventure, my idea of an inward walkabout; a journey of soul searching.
I pushed my mind to new limits, challenging it in every possible moment with discipline, indulgence, abstinence and addiction. I ventured into the right and wrong, knowing where to draw the line. Thoughts, feelings and desires were examined, created, destroyed and modified to find the perfect harmony of friction. My mind became the safe place, the shelter I seek when I was tired of the world outside. I closed the door on this newfound compulsion and let no one in. I had the key, only I was allowed. What was once tacit was now full blown chaos. And I loved it, I loved the obscurity, I found it peaceful, and I still do.
I never realized I lost a grip on myself until I fell flat on the ground. At first it felt good to feel liberated, saying and doing things I never would have before. Then it all came crashing down on me like an inverted sea, like a chemical imbalance that cannot find equilibrium, an addiction that refused ejection from the system. I grew distant from the life I knew, I lost my filter, I lost the spectacles of perception I had and embraced a whole new psychedelic experience. I subdued my self to my whims. I disconnected. I separated.
Yes, I became a product of my own insanity, a conception of my synthetic redemption, an idea progressed within my whims. I stared into the darkness long enough for it to stare back at me. I liked what I saw, and I liked what I exposed. Now who I was, fights a defeated battle with who I am. I have created a monster. A monster that will exist till the day I make my choice to defeat it. Until that day, I will live in this disequilibrium finding peace in chaos, concord in friction and solace in obscurity.
Everything changes. Everything remains. Some call it degeneration, some call it progress. But it is what it is, and I am what I am. A figment of my imagination, I always will be.
Your eyes inspire me in so many ways. There’s a dark beauty inside that resonates a story in my head. It heightens my pulse and makes my heart beat faster. It pierces my darkness and leaves me hanging for a moment. I’m a prisoner of your eyes, lost, alone and enwrapped in bliss. A passionate mystery in which I find escape. An ephemeral wave of hope it brings, like the flickers of a candle about to burn out, glowing bright in its final moment before the darkness encloses. Just as it began, the wave ends, leaving me yearning for more. Yearning to look deep into your eyes again and embrace your soul to feel the warmth I’ve never felt. The whispers of your soul instigate the words I long to say, through my veins and into my fingers, on to a random piece of paper. Meanings form in black ink and the paper becomes a treasure. The treasure I lock away from the prying eyes of the world, so that I only I could read the story of your eyes. The story that illuminates the darkness and pieces together the fragments which fall apart, the story that sheds hope to the quiet desolation within, the story that reminds me of everything I yearn for and everything I will never attain.
We sat down on the sand and watched the waves crashing in the darkness. It was the last night of our major 5 day holiday. I wanted to make the most of it before I drove back home into the real world, where lay the usual work week, daily responsibilities and the other miscellaneous personal demons.
It was 4am in Arugam Bay, and I was sitting on the sand with a friend waiting for the sunrise. I always wanted to see the sunrise and missed it in Maldives. It was just a short walk across the island to watch it rise, and I overslept. I had to try very hard to forgive myself for not witnessing it when it was so easy. I wasn’t going to miss it after driving across the country to Arugam Bay. My hopes were dashed the previous day when it was raining like a bitch and dastardly black clouds covered the skies. Today was much brighter than yesterday, and although I didn’t have any high hopes to see the sunrise, I had enough optimism to forget about the long drive back in the morning and sit on the beach with a drunken friend for two hours to watch it rise.
So there we were with an iPod dock listening to the soothing sounds of Armin Van Buuren’s Zocalo. I felt the guitar riffs pulsating through my stoned mind. I felt the drowsiness creeping in but struck up random conversations to clear them away. The night was cloudless, and we were bathed in the moonlight. It was a beautiful picture and we were in the middle of it while the world around was asleep. As the sky became clearer my hopes began to rise. While having a conversation which I cannot remember I just happened to look up at the dark sky. Through the clouds I saw a luminous green light streaking across the sky. It was like a shooting star, but there was no tail. I was shocked because it felt so real yet it seemed like a hallucination. I thought I was seeing things until I heard my friend say ‘Woah what was that?’
Then followed a conversation to characterize what we had seen. Was it a shooting star? No, it had no tail, and the greenish colour looked very artificial. Also, it can’t be a plane because planes don’t move like that? So what could it be? Could it be a UFO? No way! We are stoned but that doesn’t mean we should jump to conclusions about seeing things from outer space. Come to think of it we can actually call it a UFO since it’s an unidentified flying object. We couldn’t define what it was and we gave up leaving it as a mystery which intrigued our minds more.
The ocean was dark except for the white slivers of the waves gleaming in the moonlight. I stared at the waves and listened to the sound of it crashing. My mind played wonders on my eyes as I saw things in the sea which I cannot really explain. I still remember what I saw, it was something very natural yet it looked out of this world.
The time was 4.30 am and we decided to smoke up the final J that I rolled especially for this moment, and wait a bit for the buzzing in our heads to settle down, and then hit the water at about 5.15am so that we can chase away the drowsiness and be in the water once the sun came up. So we smoked up while feeling sorry for the other buggers who went to sleep early. It was the last night and we were making full use of it. I had to drive back home but I kicked that thought out of my head so that I could focus on what was at hand. After a while we both leaned back on the sand and stared up at the sky. The stars were contrasting against the black of the sky as they shimmered ostentatiously. Just as I felt myself drifting off, I saw something that made me stare. A star was moving swiftly in the sky. My friend saw it too, so we weren’t imagining it. We followed the journey of this star across the sky until we realized it was a satellite. It circled above us as it made a wide arc across the world we could see. We waved and gave peace signs, happy that we witnessed something like this in that state of mind. This was definitely the best high I ever had. Such a simple moment yet it felt extraordinary.
After the satellite disappeared behind the clouds, we decided to hit the water. It was rough and the waves were high. We didn’t go far and stayed close to the shore. Waves crashed around us and we kept diving into them and riding the waves. One wave spun me underwater and tossed me a fair distance away and I crashed headfast into the water banging my head against the ground. It hurt like a bitch but I wasn’t gonna let that ruin the moment. The sky was getting lighter in the horizon. We could see the beauty of the orange glow as it seeped into the blue black above. Slowly creeping in, pushing the dark side of the sky to the other side of the world so that we could have our share of the sunlight for the day. The horizon was a fusion of yellow, orange, light blue and dark blue. When I looked back to the other side, it was still night. The moon was out and almost full and stars illuminated the sky. I felt like I was trapped somewhere between night and day. I was totally tripping. What an experience.
We didn’t get to see the sun, as there were dark clouds over the horizon to conceal the spectacle. Obviously put there by nature to mock our optimism of seeing the sunrise. I was a little disappointed, yet everything that happened up to that moment was brilliant and this kept me upbeat. I waited a little longer hoping to see the sun, but it had no plan of showing itself. I walked back out of the water, into our little hotel, feeling glorious deep inside for that unforgettable moment I lived in, and for the fact that I tried my best to see the sun. I knew no one would understand when we told them our story after they woke up. They would think we were stupid to be up and wait, especially for me, when I had a long ass drive back home.
I was happy as I hit the sack. I closed my eyes and pictured everything once again. My last night in this real dream was complete. The minor nagging feeling I had before where I thought we didn’t experience Arugam Bay to it’s fullest was no more. This was the best high yet, and I’m glad it ended with such a smooth bang. I knew nothing could bring me down. I went to sleep at 6.30am, trying to get as much shuteye before I woke up again at 8.30 to leave. As I look back on that moment, I know that these words I have written cannot do justice to what I felt at that moment. Everything that happened will forever be etched in my memory, because I know that nothing else would do justice to the visions in my eyes, the thoughts in my head and the sensation in my heart.
The mother of all long weekends came and went, and during the course of the five day holiday, I was engaged in doing all things awesome. A huge trip was planned and executed brilliantly. The travel itinerary was one night in Avissawella on Wednesday right after work, head off to Badulla on Thursday morning and spend two nights there before driving across the island to the much awaited Arugam Bay for yet another two nights before coming back home on Monday in time for Avurudu.
Wednesday was long and fucked up. It was a day filled with many client calls, reports and emails and when I came home, I was tired to the bone. It was five guys that left on the journey and two more were going to join us in Badulla on Friday. The place we were staying in Avissawella was called Famous Guest House, but ironically no one had heard about it. We quickly kept our bags in the room and went into the lounge with a packet of good stuff and a pipe to enjoy while watching the Liverpool – Chelsea match.
I couldn’t pay much attention to the match because my thoughts were going haywire. The good stuff was called ‘Death’ for a reason, and the afterlife was quite amazing. The effects of Death coupled with the fatigue of the long day I had, made it really hard for me to keep myself from falling off my seat. Now I can’t remember much of what happened that night, but I remember feeling really good, and I heard the next morning that Chelsea had won the match, although I was watching it till the end.
The next day we had breakfast in the town and headed off to Badulla, on the long yet scenic route through Nuwara Eliya. The twists and turns were challenging, yet I was up for it, as it was my little personal goal to drive the whole way and back. I was quite stubborn in refusing to give the wheel to the substitute drivers and that aroused some scorn. But I really wanted to be behind the wheel. The drive was long, yet eventful. The scenery was amazing and I realized once again how much beauty Sri Lanka has to offer.
We reached Badulla in the night and went to our hotel. The place was called Riverside Holiday Inn, but guess what, no river in sight! Spent two days there, smoking Death through joints, bongs and cross J’s! Yep, that’s right, we had a cross J like the one in Pineapple Express. Fucked us up quite nicely. Went to the Dunhinda waterfall next morning after getting stoned, and some clever fucker in the group ‘forgot’ to mention that there was a long walk over steep rocks and bridges, and I thought I would die because it is so hard to trek when you are under the influence. The waterfall was nice but totally not worth the climb.
After some time at the waterfall and a very tiring climb back up, we went to the hotel and had a nice Nasi Goreng for lunch. Oh yeah I forgot to mention, on the way to Badulla, we stopped at a Cargills to get some stuff and spotted a small portable BBQ grill for just 800 bucks. We thought it would be a wise investment and bought it to BBQ on the Arugam beach. Our enthusiasm got the better of us and we decided to have a BBQ at Badulla as well. So on a hairpin bend on some dark road, we lit the grill and BBQ’d sausages and ate it with bread and chili sauce.
Afterward, we went back to the hotel and awaited the two buggers who were to join us. After they came, we intoxicated ourselves once more and went to sleep. Early next morning we set off for Arugam Bay, the final destination in our journey. The drive was good, reached there much earlier than we expected. The roads were surprisingly good and the scenery was just out of this world. There was an area, where we emerged through the thicket of the jungle which surrounds the road onto a clearing, where you can see far away. Trees and greenery cover the entire area, and in the distance you can witness what looks like a very modern bridge, and beyond it, the sea.
The first day at Arugam Bay was a letdown because it started to rain like a bitch. We were all a little glum but managed to have fun while the rain raged on outside. We stayed up till about 1.30 and went to sleep hoping to see the sunrise in the morning. But I didn’t hear the alarm, and overslept. When I woke up I realized I hadn’t missed anything because the sky was cloudy. However the rain subsided and the clouds cleared and we witnessed the much talked about beauty of this place. The sea water had an amazing blue and it contrasted magnificently with the shiny sandy shore. The beach was quite dead as we had come just before the season and it was very peaceful. We took a walk to an area where the beach and the jungle almost merge. The water was rough and exciting. I believe the sea has to be rough and I find it quite boring when it’s calm. There is no better feeling than diving head first into a big wave.
That night we had a long session since it was our last night. Everybody decided to go to sleep at about 3am. But I didn’t want to sleep because I was afraid I will miss the sunrise. My friend who was quite drunk at the time also wanted to stay up and enjoy since it was the last night. So we decided to go and hang by the beach with his iPod dock listening to some music. I rolled a joint to have once the sun rose. I didn’t have my hopes quite up but I was optimistic enough to go and wait for it without sleeping. Everyone else went to sleep while the two of us were at the beach. This moment, I believe, was the best stoned moment I have had yet. It deserves another post and it’s gonna get one, so I will divulge into the details of what happened on that post.
The next morning after a lack of sleep I got prepared to drive back home. I was apprehensive about it yet I wasn’t about to let anyone else take the wheel either. I wasn’t being stupid as I was accused of. I was confident of myself and if I wasn’t, there was no way I would risk so many lives to just drive. I’m glad I was extremely stubborn about it because man, did I not enjoy that drive. It was one of the best experiences of my life. My vehicle, Chuck, never gave up on me. It was the first time that it actually fishtailed when I took three turns together at 130kmph and everybody thought that we would almost topple. At that moment I think my brain had an orgasm.
This trip to me was a life changing experience. The drive, the scenery, the whole fucking experience was just totally out of this world. The best part about going on a long trip to several destinations is whenever you pack up from one place to go to another you realize you are not going home and packing up doesn’t mean that it’s the end of the trip as it usually signifies. To me this was a resurrection. This is where I found peace and hope again. I vowed to go back to the beaches of Arugam Bay, to see the sunrise, to experience this beautiful bay in its full glory. This was my near life experience.
Yesterday was a wish that never came true, a brick wall that I ran into. Yesterday was an epitome to the paranoia inside. Everything that I had kept bottled up flooded out of my mind, like an angry swarm of bees. They surrounded me and hounded me, until they sucked me dry, until I lost the peace inside. I tried to smile yet I couldn’t get myself to believe in something further from the reality that I confided in.
In my eyes, you became a disappointment. Through the confusion that blurred my vision I tried to look closer. I saw what I never wanted to see. I saw the things that hurt me, dancing around, mocking me. It was a trap. A trap that I had set, on purpose, giving myself the benefit of the doubt, so that I can find out, and define the truth from the lie. Yet I got caught in it, and I became a victim of my own crime.
I guess I am the one who gave you a reason to look away. I’m the one who pushed you away. With my weird ways and the little world I created inside my mind, I pushed you out. Now it hurts to see you smile with them, when you ignore my eyes and look right through me. But I guess this was eventual, I should have seen it coming. But I was lost in the beauty that was created in front of my eyes to doubt reality between illusion.
I’m getting used to the rubble grazing my back and the debris around me. After all, it is something that I put there. An illusion made for me, by me. It comes together with the flaws that come from within. So next time you see me, there will be a smile on my face and a twinkle in my eye, because I’m donning my favorite disguise. There will be laughter to drown the pain, there will be words to hide the shame, there will be smiles to show I’m sane, and my hands to show I am game. And through it all, deep inside, there will be that voice I can’t shut out, the voice that breaks me, silently whispering those words, letting them seep in through the fissures into the weakness of my mind. They will attack my brain and devour it, until there is nothing left but a laugh that is hollow, a smile that is fake, words that are empty and a hand that is spent, to show the world that I exist, yet hide that I’m not alive.