Friday, April 20, 2007

"Naps" after staying up all night

Wow I'm discombobulated.

Just woke up from a "nap." I think I laid down... 3 hours ago? I don't really know, it was light out back then, that much I do know. Feel like someone snuck up on me and conked me on the back of the head with a lead pipe. What week is it?

I was on up all night on Mt. Hood, keeping an eye out for folks who are fasting up there. The ceremony is called the Hanblechya, or Vision Quest. The style they are doing is a "dark" fast, meaning they are inside little teeny sweat-lodge looking structures. Not only no food or water for 4 days, but no light either. It's an admirable thing they are doing, and last night is the only night I could fit in a helper shift in my schedule.

There is a fire kept 24/7 while they are in their altars, and there is a guard post or "Akichita" present the whole time as well.

Akichita is not a totally ceremonial post, as people do come and go off the land and need questions answered, and need to be smudged off (with smoke from cedar boughs) before they proceed into the property. Also, there is a very important feeling for the folks in ceremony that someone' watching over them. Nothing unexpected is going to interrupt their ceremony, they have someone out there specifically to take care of any problems.

It was a haul to stay up all night. I ended up using my cell phone set to an alarm every 15 minutes to pull it off. Gotta love technology. Nice test of my newfound health... sit up all night under a Pendleton blanket in the woods. It was beautiful out, but eventually it got cold enough I had to resort to sitting in my car. I didn't like this idea because I couldn't hear in there, but it was just getting too dam cold.

So, shout out to the folks (3 I believe) who are fasting. They're studs (studettes, all women); may they get the insight they are seeking, may they be safe, and be able to integrate their experiences back into the world.

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