My thoughts and activities in Dharamsala

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Coco Bolo

Yesterday June 30th 2005 was my 27th birthday, I had a exam to take for my Natural Science class. It was quite a hefty exam, felt that I needed to take a nap after taking it, I was utterly exhausted afterwards. Anyways, at the beginning June, while I mowing at work I had a strong feeling suggesting that I was to cut my hair. It was such a strong feeling that I knew that the time had come. Now hair can be something trivial, but for me it was a big decision but also it was an easy one. I was totally comfortable with the idea. My scalp had not been touch by sunlight, wind or skin since I was between 16-17 years old. Meaning that all of my adult life thus far, I have had dread locks. There is a kind of intensity that I believe surrounds a person who has had dreadlocks. A brother once told me that all of the thoughts and experiences that I have had are in my hair, similar to the layers of a rockcut that contains the past history of the Earth. Since hair is closest to your head, your thoughts are immediately there. What I am getting at with my ranting is that I have been carrying on my head everything that has happened to me since I was in high school. Every thought that I have had. The turmoil of dropping out of High School, living on the streets, hunger, addictions, hitchhiking, people, friends, college and graduation. The good and bad was beginning to weigh down on me, it manifested with the cracking of my neck. So I decided that on my birthday I will cut my off hair. Once I had announced my plans, I instantly received opposition. I was told that my neck pain will not go away, that I regret it cutting it. But finally I found willing ears. Ears that would assist me in my haircutting experience. My good friend Christian a dreadhead himself had agreed to cut my hair, and we set the date. Through that time I had my dog Comet shaved, which she loved, and I was more conscious and mindful than I was ever been. For I wanted to be fully mindful of the implications of what I was to do. For the month of June I was conscious of what was on my head. So yesterday after drumming with High School students from the upward bound program I went to Christian's apartment armed with a white Berea College baseball cap and a digital camera to document the experience. On my way there as I sped up Chestnut St was conscious of my every strand of hair, of every movement of my legs as I rode my bike to Christian's. Once I got there and was settled in. Christian burned some sage and placed a coffee table in front of me. I sat on the floor and started cutting the first ten dreads, and then Christian took over until 2 hours or so later I was left with one solitary dread that hangs of the back of my scalp. I in turn gave Christian a haircut releasing him of the few dreads that he had kept on the back of his head. My parents had wanted me do this years ago, but this needed to be my decision. If I would of followed their command I would of regretted it. Christian and his partner suggested that I place my dreads in different parts of world as I travel towards India. I was fond to this idea, though in my mind I could see myself having to explain to airport customs agents why I am traveling with a bag of nappy hair. I will search for holy spots in where I can lay a dread in the spot. I will of course start in Berea, I will find someplace special. This morning I placed my bag of hair on a scale and it read 1.3 lbs, which does not seem that heavy but I think that the thoughts and the experiences made it feel heavier to me. Now I can rub my own head which feels really good. I am starting anew, heading to a different place, with different languages and culture. I will be a clean slate to those that I will met in Dharamsala. The new thoughts and experiences will have room to now sprout from my scalp, my factory of thoughts.


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