Harvest Moon September 2019
**Scott Carrier and Home of the Brave.com**
If you have never heard of Scott Carrier, I highly recommend his podcast. He is sensitive, and his approach to a subject is most unique. He has a beautiful, compelling voice, and his delivery is heartfelt and honest. Introduce yourself this way. Go to ThisAmericanLife.org and listen to podcast #181 The Friendly Man. Then check out his website.
**The Trip To India**
Last month I mentioned I was making a trip to India for dental work and that I was anxious about the whole idea. It seemed crazy to travel half way around the world for dental care. I am back with at least 20 good stories, and to say it was one of the greatest experiences of my life. I met so many wonderful human beings, made great photographs and had some of the best meals I've ever eaten. The dentistry was painless and perfect. I boarded the plane for home with a beautiful set of teeth. I could write every one of the stories, but instead I want to give you my take away thoughts. It was mind opening for me. I am so wrapped up in my work, and living in a small town, that I have become somewhat of a hermit. Also, I haven’t had to think on my feet in a while. Marci, always covering my ass, and tolerating my loftiness. When you are in a new environment all your instincts are heightened, and you are keenly aware of what’s going on around you. That being said I never felt threatened or in danger, except for maybe the traffic, which is horrendous and funny. All the people I met seemed happy, even the people living on the streets. Everyone seems to get something to eat, and their friendliness is genuine. The waiters, hotel staff, and doctors go to depths to make you comfortable and pleased. I mentioned, too, in my last email, that I am not worldly. I may have not seen a lot of the world, but I am worldly. People all over the world are the same. They want the same things, food, shelter, a way to make a living, and the best for their children and family. I feel like I have grown. It made me a better person. My wife, my family and my friends are the most important thing in my life, and while making photographs defines me, I have more room for both.
Another friend passed away. I've known Clem for thirty years. He was a unique individual, a fine musician, with a great voice. No one could sing Randy Newman's "Guilty" like him.
In the beginning he lived in Marathon and built a shed of a house in the southeast corner of town. He was here a year or so I guess. Not long enough. He moved to Terlingua and was a fixture on the front porch and the Starlight Theatre, most recently forming a duet with Rob Dean. I may be the last person to see him alive. I went to the place he was staying in Odessa, to find him asleep. So I ran an errand, and came back, and he was awake. He had a trach tube connected to his throat and the mechanics of the machine were quite distracting. At one point the tube disconnected and I had to get a nurse to reattach it properly. There was a meal on the table. Ham, butter beans, and some green stuff. Maybe spinach, or collard greens. He didn’t touch it. Even legally blind, he sensed how bad it looked. I understood. Clem had no voice, and lipreading confuses me, so I asked him to write on a piece of paper what he wanted. He asked for his teeth that were in a cup at the bathroom sink. I got them and he put them in. He then wrote Marfa. He wanted to listen to the radio station. His computer was dead, so I plugged it in and let it charge. He asked for some blankets and laid down with hands together and fingers index next to index, middle next to middle, and so on. His eyes were closed. I tuned in the radio, but it was news, so I went to his Itunes library and found Hot Tuna, Captain Beefheart, and other music he liked. I made sure it looped, so it would not stop, and I put his earbuds in. Then I remembered that for some reason, and this is how higher power works, I had noise cancelling headphones in my camera bag. I got them, and put them on his head to drown out the noise of the machine. That’s how I left Clem.
Thank you for all your love and support.
Happy full moon. Get outside.