Wow. Its over now.
Its funny, but it felt like it would last forever. It seemed to keep coming back when it started dying off until it died off one last time. A total of about 20 hours of music. I got to see 1 or 2 hour sets from at least 10 of my favorite DJs.
Its a tie between Underworld, Moby and Armin Van Buuren for my favorites. Underworld told a beautiful story with their music, it really took you to another place. Moby straight up rocked the house, his was hard hitting; when you heard it your mind just went blank and you couldn't stop moving to the beat. Armin Van Buuren played some good solid tracks and wove them together rather nicely. All the other DJs laid down some nice stuff too.
I'm exhausted, my mind is blank, my feet and back hurt. I tried to pace myself, but even then Ultra and Miami was quite a lot to take in. I've been overloaded with the best music, the best visuals and the most beautiful women in the world for 2 days now. Everything is just starting to numb out with the familiarity. Its going to be hard to return to normal life in a normal city. Out here everything is just a fantasy land. I'm very happy to be alive out here, experiencing all this.
In a few days it will all fade away; just like the end of a good movie or book that is never as good as the first time you experienced it.
Its sad in a way, that our experiences drift away the same way our bodies must. But the fact is that I experienced what I experienced, I was there, in the moment at one point in time. There's no reason to hold on to the past, you can't live in the past although you can cherish memories; the only place you can live is in the present moment.
Tomorrow begins the journey home, I will say goodbye to my Miami home and begin returning to normal life. I can take these memories and smile in the present moment.
Holy shit, holy shit.
Its about 3AM now. About an hour of that was spent trying to find my hotel. Another hour was spent in the "afterhours" party at 90 degrees. 8 hours before that we're spent at ultra 2008.
Ultra was badass. I can't really say who the best DJ was. The high points were Danny Tenaglia, Tiesto, The Crystal Methhod, Rabbit in the Moon and a few other DJs I didn't know. It was sick insane, easily the most engaging shit I've ever seen. Can't really explain it better than that.
The afterparty at 90 degrees was fucking weak. The club was nearly empty after the show, and they promoted it so much. Its a new club in Miami, and it failed miserably, I left after about 15min. The only beer they had was some wierd foreign shit. I stood in line for a well established club, "The Pawnshop", but the line was too long so I bailed.
Its a bitch wondering downtown Miami at night. I couldn't remember what street the hotel was on, but I kept on walking and eventually found it. Miami is suprisingly safe after dark. Its a very nice city.
Anyways, I'm too drunk to write anything more meaningful than that. I bought a new nice camera and will take some pics tomorrow, the no camera policy seems leanient as there we're shitloads of people there taking pics.
Ultra starts back up tomorrow at 12noon, I probably won't be up till later, but goddamn I'm ready for more!
Ah, finally made it to Miami. This hotel is sweet, its more like a small condo; it has a living room and a bedroom, 2 TVs, a dining table, a couch and a nice view of the downtown area.
Wondered out onto the streets near sundown in search of food. There we're a bunch of interesting places to eat, but they we're all closed. Being the business district, that makes sense. They only cater to the workers here.
There are so many parties going on tonight its not even funny. But I'm too tired from the drive so just gonna chill until UMF tomorrow at 4. Can't wait.
Nothing really much else to report. Left camera inside car which has been valeted[sp?] until Sunday, may buy a new camera tomorrow. It won't take non-blurry shots unless your robotically still anyway.
Downtown Miami is virtually the same as downtown Dallas and downtown LA. Its divided off into districts, hard as hell to navigate via car, has subway like transportation system. People honk a lot. Homeless people on street that beg for money, etc...
One thing that separates Miami from other cities is the people. Hispanic languages are spoken everywhere, the vast majority of restaurants downtown have Hispanic names.
A lot of Hispanics here look white, a guy was speaking perfect English, but when he got to the main desk he has a conversation with the girl entirely in Cuban(or maybe Portugeuse? It wasn't Spanish anyways). Its just one of those cultural nuances that every city seems to have.
Back in Texas we're used to thinking of hispanics as poor laborers from Mexico. Here, there are a lot of very affluent Cubans, Portuguese and other hispanic nationalities. This city is very alive with the American dream, the idea that you can come here from any nation and be able to thrive. The city has been created and shaped by foreigners, evident in the various mom and pop restaurants here.
Anyways, UMF 2008 tomorrow, just need to find ways to pass the time until then. I believe further expedetions into the downtown area are in order....
Ah, today was a nice long drive. The air was cool, traffic, not too bad.
I'm in a pretty rustic motel now. Quite a departure from the beachside the night before. The colors of the room are dull red, brown and a dirty off-white. It has a smell that tells a story. Its not a fresh smell, or the smell of some cleaning fragerence. No, its a musty smell. A smell that says, "hey motherfucker, i've been around, ive seen this and done that". Its one of those smells. To my nose its not bad, but some people would say the motel is bad, its moldy.
The people of St. Augustine are strange. I went to a local bar to observe them. It seemed like everyone in there carried a different hick accent, you had the Texas hick, the Lousiana hick and the Georgia/Alabama/Florida hick (I can't quite differentiate the accents over here yet). This place is country, but at the same time city.
St. Augustine itsself, quite small, is a mixture of ancient houses, new mansions, Atlantic beaches and historically themed tourist attractions.
Downtown is where some Spanish explorer had thought he found the fountain of life, they built a theme park around the spring. All the buildings are Spanish architecture. The best way I can describe downtown is the Spanish quarter of Six Flags Over Texas.
Driving down the city streets you will see strange museums and alligator parks. This place is a small suburban city with a downtown area, random attractions, well dressed tourists and at least 3 different kinds of hicks all cramed into one.
This place is the nexus of the universe, everything is just crammed in here. Everything is interesting. Its obviously an old town with quite a lot of history. It reminds me a lot of Hirado, Japan; the first trade port of Japan which I visited a few years ago. Everything is just so rich with history; it gives the city an indescribable sense of maturity and mystery.
It almost feels non-commercial, like the city has a spiritual essense you can absorb by driving its streets. Despite it having so many different types of attractions and people it still has a single, focused personality.
This is the kind of place you could spend eons in; exploring all the interesting randomness.
But, thats not for me. Got to keep on moving. Stopping in so many cities over such a small period of time its easy to forget that there is a final destination. I'm not really here as a tourist, I'm just a traveler passing through. Tomorrow we reach our final destination of Miami.
The number of recognizable license plates is getting smaller. Can't remember the last time I saw a TX plate. Over here its all Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama or Florida.
I drove through many of those states today. The farther south-east I travel the slower things get. People drive slower, people talk slower, people move slower. This became most apparent in Alabama, I wondered into an IHOP and people talked so slow. I spoke in my normal cadance, which I think is pretty normal for Dallas and their reply was almost alien in its sluggishness.
I get the impression people out here are not busy at all, they are not rushing towards things. They just let life roll over them. Maybe thats a good thing.
Right now I am in a hotel room overlooking Pensacola Beach. Its a 5 mile or so stretch of beach outside of the mainland. You drive 10 min over a bridge with a 1 dollar toll to get out here.
There are two lanes through the center of the island, beach houses and hotels on either side with the occasional bar. Speed limit is 35, but people drive much much slower. Very relaxed, and I suppose if you lived out here you would be very relaxed.
Being a weekday, the beaches we're rather vacant. I walked for miles up and down, it was very relaxing. The sound of the waves takes you back to a primal time before humans existed. You get lost in the sound and dissapear for a while. This is probably where the first music started; the sound of waves, the same as the sound of a heartbeat. An endless void.
For dinner, I wondered into a bar. Fresh shrimp, the best ever. Fresh beer, the best ever. Everything is so clean and comfortable here. The beach is a good place.
Tomorrow, we set course for Saint Augustine, Florida. The gulf of Mexico will be replaced with the Atlantic Ocean. Can't wait to sleep in this monster bad-ass bed.
The drive today was badass. Long solo drives are always good. It forces you to reduce your mind to nothing. I'm not "the admin", "the driver", "the homeowner", "the person". I'm just an absent-minded observer that passes through time, distance and experience.
Thats why I take trips like this. It reduces your ego to nothing. Of course you can get that through meditation; travel is the easy way. Removed from everything familiar, all your usual vices and habits instantly dissapear. You are born again with a clean slate.
It also allows you to find your "pain-body". The pain-body is a concept author Eckhart Tolle put into words(audiobook "The Power of Now"). Its the thing that blocks you from being in the moment. Its the part of you that wants you to be trapped in anger, fear or pain instead of the true freedom that exists outside of it.
Being on the road allows me to confront my pain-body. Mine makes me feel fearful and trapped. I can almost clearly define it now: It is an eye that looks at me from the outside and calls me stupid; it makes me second guess myself with the prospect any minor action (such as going to a restaurant to eat). It makes me stay in comfortable routine instead of going out and doing things. I can temporarily hide it with alcohol and other drugs, but when the drugs or alcohol stop, it returns.
It is fed by video games and work. But now, without either, it has become hungry. It plainly shows itsself to me as I drive down the interstate, it begs for me to go back home so it can eat again. But, now, in this state I can plainly see it; I can see that it is not a permanent part of myself but is rather separate.
It is something that was created by my experiences growing up, times before I can remember, and now it lingers on like a ghost.
In my current state it is subdued. My existence is in direct opposition to it, there is nothing here for it to eat. Everything is unknown. In other words, I'm on vacation finally.
I digress. Despite these great advances I'm making mentally, there exists a shallower level that must be recorded.
Jackson is a good place. Its about the size of a college town. The people here are good. Your typical southern folk.
Nothing much more to say than that. The highways are laid out like Dallas, there are rich neighborhoods and poor neighborhoods. Nothing really special to note here, its just your standard town.
Ah, so tomorrow we begin the journey to Pensacola, FL. I await the drive with great anticipation.
Ah, so here's the part where this place stops being fantasy story time, and starts getting real.
I got my rental car for the trip today. Probably, a strange way to do it. Drove my car to DFW and parked in long term parking, then rode the bus to the rental car place and got the car.
Its a nice 2008 Dodge Charger. I spent about 10min inside trying to figure out where the wierd looking keys go. The car rental staff stared at me from afar, I hate having people tell me how to do things, so I just kept jamming the key inside the hole that didn't fit. Eventually, I gave up and cracked open the owners manual. Turns out the square end of the remote door control goes in the hole. So I got that thing in there and drove off.
I hate that you can't hear the engine, the steering is too loose, and the stance of the car is too high; its a cross between a mini-van and a car. Still, it holds up pretty well at highway speeds and is comfortable.
Driving it, I already miss my car (2001 Trans AM), its low, you can actually hear the engine, theres loud road noise, theres a sunroof and the handling is like a laser(since its been lowered a few inches). But that bitch is too old for the trip, 80,000 miles and I almost cry every time I put another on her because I know thats one mile closer to the end of the cars life.
Anyways, I'm all squared away for the trip, got the maps, got the music, got the tickets and the hotel reservations. Just have to wait til Monday. Technically, I'm on vacation and on-call at the same time til' then; trying to decide if I should have one last drink at home or save it for the road, hmmm... only time will tell.
The cicadas of summer sing their song from a tree outside your window.
Somehow, their sound makes everything feel quiet and empty. As if your routine consciouness had ceased. Right now, in this moment, its you sitting in your chair and the cicadas. Everything is easy and light, there are no burdens you carry with you.
Your not trying to fill your head with things other people created. Your not trying to become absorbed in anything. Your not seeking anything, or minding the time. You can finally feel the weight of your body again, the sensation of breathing.
So beautiful and simple, this is life.
Finally, its time to be free again. Trade the familiar with the unfamiliar. Throw everything you own, everyone you know; throw all that into the void and experience the action of travel.
Empty roads, busy interstates, shacks in small forest towns, resorts on the beach. All these things. A place is experienced and the next moment it is forgotten.
Yes, I am lucky. I will be going to Ultra Music Festival '08 in Miami, Fl by car. About 1400 miles. It will be good stuff.
Stops in Jackson AL(nature shack), Pensacola FL(beach), St.Augistine FL(beach), Miami FL(beach) will be forthcoming. Its gonna be a great time to shed some tension off. Still about 3 weeks away. Gonna try to get some pics up.
Travel inspired mix coming soon.
Life, free from chains and all connections with the world. Free from emotions. Free from the ego. Being in the moment. Experiencing every second for everything. Living on the very edge of time, moment-by-moment. This is the meaning of life.
DJ Shog - Go
Mike Foyle - Shipwrecked: John O'Callaghan vs Mike Foyle Remix
A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose (Unabridged) Part 3 of 4
A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose (Unabridged) Part 2 of 4
Denga & Manus - E-Clipse
Super8 & Tab - First Aid
Majai - Lightwave: Mike Foyle Remix
Electric Pulse - White Noise
Through great trials you learn to forget yourself again. You find your soul has been sent to some void.
When the trial started all you could think of was the comfort of home. Your habitual way of living. After staying in the trial for a few days you forgot about home. 18 hour days, only returning home for sleep. Your ego dissolved into nothing.
Now, your home again. Its after the trial. You find your ego slowly return to you. Everything seems different. The things that brought you comfort before seem different and disconnected.
You are at a point where you could either move back into the way you did things before or just as easily find a new way of living. Its like standing on top of a mountain and deciding which face to decend.
After great consideration, you pick up your headphones and records again, you silently descend the mountain and return to your habitual way of consciousness.
Tiesto - Just Be
Stephen J. Kroos - Formalistick
Cassiopeia - Sunny Lax
David Shaw - Arabian Nights (Flash Brothers Remix)
Arksun - Arisen
David Shaw - Arabian Nights (Flash Brothers Remix)
Tired eyes stare into the television camera. The words seem slightly blurred, hard to read. You can't remember the run-through you had earlier. Words lazily slide out of your mouth without making their distinctive sharp ring.
In the last moments of the show you think of home briefly. The beer store. Being able to relax in your own environment. The stage director points at you and you read your lines as if in a dream.
Now your driving home, trying to relax your body despite the heavy traffic. Your mind goes to a different place. Where does it go?
AVB - A State of Trance 2007 - In the club (somewhere near the middle)
Mr. Pitt - Isolarium
AVB - A State of Trance 2007 - In the club (somewhere near 3/4)
Rob B - Activation
John O'Callaghan - Big Sky
Horse clopps (I fucked the mix up)
David Shaw - Arabian Nights (Flash Brothers Remix)
Perpetuous Dreamer - The Sound of Goodbye (Above and Beyond Remix)
I've been asking myself a lot of questions recently due to a great mental/physical experience.
Mind floating off somewhere, I haven't meditated properly in months. I'm starting to feel the purpose in my life fade. Trying to find it, but its just a blank.
I remember now that there is no purpose. Just do what you want, do what you like. That is the purpose. In other words, the act of doing creates purpose. The fact that your the one doing it is all it takes, even if the act is sitting still.
Its easy to forget(feel) something as simple as that. Where does it exist? (Now I can feel it again)
I feel this scary ball of energy gather within my soul. Its scary because I don't know what to do with it. It seems to be limitless.
Why does it come now? I'm not drunk. I don't need sex. I just had a good workout. I completed many good tasks today.
I don't understand it. Its generic, not driving me towards any specific thing, but full and needs to be released. What is the mechanism behind this release? The compass keeps spinning and there is no sensation. Only pure energy fueling the depths.
Its a great monster, I keep feeding it music and words. It makes me feel everything much deeper than it should be. There is no superficial here, everything said and everything seen hits straight to the core. Is this what emotions feel like?
It wants to experience things. It wants to do things. It wants to feel things. It wants to hear and see everything, it wants to take it all in. But there is not enough, there will never be enough. It wants to artificially create emotions while in reality I'm just staring at a screen. Should I keep feeding it what it wants or should I feed it something it doesn't?
The only answer is to get lost within breath for a while. Find the moment between deep breaths and live in there for a while. This is the only answer. Permafrost.
The cool chill of the night brings great happiness against the contrast of beer and hot sake. The cold is killed by the great drink on this great night.
Everything spreads out into a great void. Take a breath in and a breath out.
Ah, I must digress. Go to Sushi Yama in Dallas TX if you are able. The best beer, sake and kareoke to be found here. Find yourself in the nothingness inside yourself. A different pace.
I digress again. Battles fought and won. Life lived and lost. This is the way of all beings. Yes, I can feel the energy again and just want to make it keep going, but the sadness is that this must end at some time. Just as the end of life; the end of a night takes the same route.
Please enjoy this very moment you are experiencing now. Its all transient. At the next moment it dissapears. The moment you have now becomes nothing and turns into the next moment instantly without you even giving it a thought. So enjoy now; feel the feeling within your soul and follow it until it leads no more.
Rurouni Kenshin - OVA Track 9
Tiesto - He's A Pirate
Youtube - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wwpof1o2_Y&feature=related
Mike Foyle - Shipwrecked (Sean Tyas Remix)
Final Fantasy I - Battle theme
Soliquid - Myanmar was Cloudless
Oliver Smith - Tomahawk
Final Fantasy - The Loser
The outer fringes of the experience of life, frozen. Warm somewhere while the outside flakes off into the blinding cold.
Today I feel a tremendous amount of energy inside myself somehow. It feels good. I want to channel this energy into physical competitions. Thats the only place it feels like it could go. I need to enter some sort of competition. I need to feel the extacy of victory or the pain of defeat. I need to feel myself put up against a test of skill.
In my current situation my only opponent is myself. Yes, I will challenge myself against myself. How much can my body take before it stops working? Pushups on the tips of fingers, vertical situps. Running in the freezing cold. These are the feelings I feel. Sweet things.
Tiesto - Sweet Things
Marcel Woods - Accelerate
Bissen - Quicksand (recorded live at Ibiza)
Denga & Manus - E-Clipse (Plantagoo Remix)
Tiesto - Elements of Life
Final Fantasy(Nobuo Uematsu) - Victory Theme
The house you grew up in. Things like that. Distant warm memories that don't exist in the current hell. Need more time to experience those times.
Relive them in your mind becuse they dont exist in reality anymore.
Above and Beyond - Alone Tonight
Mr. Pit - Isolarium
Tiesto - Lethal Industry
Sonic Division - Bulky Hero
Winamp - www.bassbumper.de Recorded radio show (not sure what song it was)
U&K - L'Esperanza
Joop - The Future (Markus Schulz remix)
Sophie Sugar - Day Seven
Ayumi Hamasaki - M
Sophie Sugar - Sense of Connection
Armin Van Buuren - A State of Trance 2007:Disc 2 - In the Club (1:06:00-Finish)
Thoughts, smells and memories form vivid shapes in your mind. Always running, always fleeting, like the last few grains of sand in the hourglass.
A strong wind blows the last of the colorless sand from the large cube of white rock in the desert.
For a brief instant everything makes sense. Everything sounds better, everything feels brighter; and then ...the cube itsself blows away in the wind.
Over time the absence of the cube is forgotten. Everything is clear again and then.... the desert itsself blows away into a void.
The void makes sense and then..... even that illusion fades away.
Left with absolute nothing the heart becomes pure.
Life is supposed to be difficult. If you approach life from the viewpoint that everything should be easy then you find yourself in hell. Even mundane tasks seem strange and unnatural.
Think of times at work when you are required to do something non-routine but still inside your duty. How hard is it to do this thing? Now if you had sunken into a very long-going routine of easy/fun tasks this one non-routine task would seem difficult.
However, if you had approached even the easiest tasks with the viewpoint that they should be difficult (and maybe stretch the tasks out somehow to make them difficult) then the non-routine task would seem less difficult.
Getting lazy and sitting on your ass all day makes life seem easy, but when its time to step up to the plate and do something you find yourself faced with an impassible mountain. Its important to not allow yourself to sink into easy living. Seek difficult tasks and plunge yourself into them, feel the accomplishment of overcoming difficulty.
Life is you hanging from a bar with slack arms. Put out the effort to pull yourself up and increase your capacity. Let the sweat burn your eyes while you pull yourself up. Feel the fire in your chest as your arms burn and go numb. Smile with accomplishment as you look over the bar in spite of all your pain and troubles.
To truly enjoy empty time you must experience hardship.
When alone you want to play the music you like best. With other people you want to play music that they like best.
Does a medium exist or are there only absolutes?
Does fulfilling "wants" lead to happiness?
A fresh new year is here. It smells good.
I had forgotten the fun that can be found in life, but now I remember again. Its easy to forget, its easy to get buried in work, in living, in doing.
Remember this thing called life that you hold, don't turn into a machine.
Take an hour and stare at the sky instead of mindlessly moving from task to task. Just do nothing for a while and discover the secrets you have forgotten. The beauty hidden within yourself. Feel it.