Monday, May 21, 2007

The Tale of How I Met Pedro The Guampa

I've been asked to recount the tale of my attainment of Pedro the Guampa. But where to start? When I first drank of Pedro the guampa? When I first drank of a guampa? Or when I first drank of Pedro the Guampa once he was in my possession? Hrm.

Firstly, a guampa is generally a hollowed out bulls horn ( ) most commonly associated with being used in Paraguay more so than the other large yerba drinking countries in South America.

The first encounter I had with guampas and yerba mate was as an impressionable young lad around the age of 18 at Camp Squeah in Hope, BC. The cool older staff (Rob, Jon, Tim) would pass around this steaming horn. It was odd. It smelt like hay. And I was offered some. So I tried, and burned my tongue. That stuff is hot! So I tried it a couple more times with similar results and decided that it just wasn't for me. Then 2 years of camp passed by with me only occasionally partaking of the maté and burning my tongue. Then.. Papa Theo taught me the secret of.. `Little Sips` and a whole new world was opened to me.

I started becoming a regular feature at different maté circles around camp. I started entering into the fellowship and communion of the guampa, the gourd, the good green greatness. Long conversations, pensive discussions, and humorous discourse was soon to follow. Here a foundation of friendship and fellowship was instilled in the passing of the cup and the company of many good people.

It was at camp that I first met Ben Kauffman. Years later we would be roommates during my little stint at bible college. So it was here that I first met Pedro the Guampa. For it was Ben's back then; recently arrived from Paraguay with a soccer insignia on the front of it.

Camps came and went, years passed like grains of sand along the windswept beach and.. I found myself at college in my room in the Underground. One of the greatest birthday memories occurred one day when, after helping tidy up dishes after the supper meal, I went back to my room to discover Andrew Goertzen and Ben waiting for me with the guampa ready to go! We fellowshipped, told great tales, and did other various things (like probably played a game or two of cribbage as well).

At school I formed more friendships around the horn of goodness. With people like Andy Janzen, Tom Enns, and a number of others.

Sometime during that first term at college Ben came to me and made an offer. To sell me Pedro the Guampa (as yet unnamed at that point) for $5!. Wow. So I purchased Pedro from Ben then and there. But what was Ben going to do? Fear not.. for he had a plan. He got me to move in with him at "The Beerhouse" across the street, where he kept using the guampa for the whole second term. :) Oh Ben.

Since that time Pedro has been many places with me, and many various and wonderful friends and people have shared in the cup of life with me. And now I have the wonderful joy and honour of serving as an ambassador to this healthy, bettering, way of life. Despite occasional mockery and scorn I continue on my way with a smile on my face, a song in my step, water my thermos and yerba maté in my guampa. :)

People sometimes ask me why I don't "upgrade" to a nicer container, to a bigger container. Or to one that isn't a horn. lol. Why do I drink from my guampa? Sure it's pretty cool to drink from a frikken horn, but more than that, it is a connection to all of my friends and the good people with whom I've shared conversation and contact. It is a representation of all of my friends and they come with me where I go.

Here is a brief telling of my tale. The tale of Pedro The Guampa, and a few of the times we've spent together.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Something for Everyone!

So.. the other day I borrowed my father's camera and went for a 1 hour walk, that turned into a 3 1/2 hour walk. I ended up taking over 350 pictures... lots of multiple shots and what not. When I'm going for a walk with my beat up old camera I don't go as long because the card only holds about 49 pictures. I didn't even fill up my dad's camera. Just kept walking and shooting. It was sweet ;)

So apparently a rumour was going to be started at school about me. Something about me hooking up with a girl from school on a one night stand and she's now 3 months pregnant. This is why it's dangerous to go to a school where boys are outnumbered 30+ to 2. You become toys to be played with. Whereas when my buddy Dave and I get bored, we hacky sack. Anyways.. I told them I really didn't think that was a plausible story (and I didn't want them to start a rumour about some girl at the college.. I could care less if they spread something untrue about me.. meh) and I then went on to tell them how to create a plausible story and fill it with details that could add to it's credibility. (thus preventing the first rumour from circulating.) So apparently someone saw me eat out of the garbage can the other day, not deep, there was a tuna sandwich just on top, and when confronted I said "hey, you just cut off the teeth marks and the rest is all good". At least, so goes the rumour.

Back to the multi-hour photo walk. Here are some pictures from it. I figure there should be at least one picture in here that you should find decently enjoyable. :)

Oh.. and I noticed that there are a number of people who check this thing out. I'd like to conduct an impromptu survey and if you wouldn't mind, please leave a little hello about who the heck you are. If you don't mind. :) I'm just curious as to who some of those large red dots are on my "cluster map" thingy :) Friend? Relative? Associate? Random Stranger? Non-random Stranger?

Thanks muchly and may you have a wonderful marvellous splendid weekend full of frivolity and fun.

ps looking at the cat one makes me feel a little woozy so be careful! :)

Monday, May 14, 2007


Originally uploaded by maplemusketeer.
Today was nice and good. Sun out. Rememberd to phone mom for Mother's Day. Ate good meals.. drank tea. Got some work done on a project for school. Did a minimal amount of studying. And now it's past time for bed. I like weekends and the fact that they actually help me rest for the coming week. :) But boy am I gonna be tired in the morning from staying up later and getting up later.. maybe I should stick to my 10 pm to bed up at 6am system through the weekend also? It's a thought.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Find The Guampa

Peek A Boo
Originally uploaded by maplemusketeer.
Class goes on.
Mostly enjoyable,
except for the one which numbs my soul and leaches joy from my bones.
As exciting as reading your car's owner manual, while heavily sedated.

But hey, I can always just drift away to my inner happy land where I play fun games with all my friends. Gotta go. We're starting a new game :)

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Green Good Greenyness

Green Good Greenyness
Originally uploaded by maplemusketeer.
Yesterday the sun shown bright as I walked around after school. The flowers are out in wide array and people walk and bike all over the place. Good times to enjoy; poor times to study.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Sunday Musings Instead of Reviewing School Material

There is a beautiful descent of moisture occurring outside right now. It gracefully arrives from above on it's journey to the ground. People who see only in the general category of "rain" miss out on the myriad of varieties, joys, and beauties in the wide spectrum of possible precipitations. Right now it is a light and whispy fine thick mist, generously spaced, and proceeding downward at a gentle rate.

I am a rain geek. I am choosing to watch the wetness fall, to write about it whilst drinking my yerba mate (to which I've added a sprinkle of organic Cherry Haiku Japanese sour cherry green tea for Sunday fun) rather than read my hydrotherapy coursework. Heh. Apparently I'm caught up in several other forms of hydrotherapy: drinking tea and watching the rain fall. I shall continue with it for awhile more before returning to the slog of school work, on this great and unique, never to happen again, day.


The first time it happened was last year when I visited my brother on Quadra Island. I lay in bed, the day behind me, and it being so quiet in the woods I slowly became very aware of my own heartbeat. And the passing of each one. Never to happen again. Another beat closer to the end. Another beat less on the old ticker. But it was more than these concepts and expressions. It was an experiencing and becoming more viscerally aware of my mortality, the event of my life moving towards the inevitable cessation of my physical form. It was very cool. Since that moment sometimes I rub up against that memory, that mood, that truth, never since as strong or as long as the first, but against it again never the less.

Another beat forwards,
another beat on,
another beat on,
make the most of them all,
another beat on,
another beat on,
before they're all gone,
another beat on,

Thursday, May 03, 2007

No Studying

There will be no studying while the hockey game is on. I tried. I really did. But it's just not going to happen. But it's nice to get back to school. Apparently this is the "toughest" semester due to the condensed reality of it and the fact that they've crammed 9 different courses in that schedule. Though the courses are interesting and that helps, at least for the first little while. I really should use this time when I'm actually stoked on school to learn and get as much as I can before the school lethargy kicks in and I just want it to be done. ;)

So school, and in the occasional spare moments I still go walkabout and snag pictures. So here's some new favorites. ;)