I had eleven days off. It was strange to have all that time of freedom. I didn´t consider what I wanted to do that much. One thing was obvious, a visit to Hopkins, to Kisment, to my home, was in order. Hopkins was a discovery back in January, when my ferocious crew of she-goddesses and I had departed Guatemala in search of a new year adventure. We found ourselves first in Placencia, oft accidentally named Placentia, but soon bused our way north into fate, into Kismet.
Tricia, the owner of Kismet says that some people are meant to be there and others are not. Lacey and I found it after two hours of walking the dirt roads of Hopkins, as if we were drawn there by an add suffering magnet, or the beautifully hand painted signs.
Walking up the sandy track to Kismet for the first time, I remarked to Lacy how much it reminded me of Pt. Reyes, a place near both of our hometowns. It ended up being a foretelling comment, as Trish the owner turned out to have lived near by in Bolinas for a number of years.
Kismet is probably not for everybody. I have seen others reactions to the place, one has to have a certain love for disorder and chaos to feel at home there. One has to have a certain love for life to love Kismet. It is a place that thrives on humanity, authenticity, homemade bread and love. And when you love Kismet, it vortexes you, it sucks you in. Even when you have left it, it feels as if it has held on to a part of you.
Part of the beauty of Hopkins, and Kismet, is the people that populate it. Elvis, Trish, Dave, the CD man, the chickens, the laughing children, floating coconuts, the straggling travelers, the staring tourists. It all seems to come together in some sort of symphony, the lone sounds ugly by themselves somehow weave themselves into a delightful tune. Elvis and Trish though, are my favorites, my mom and dad.
Often while traveling I find myself feeling raw, opened up and thirsty for home. Only one place has made me feel that I am home, that same feeling of slight annoyance yet total dedication to a place and its people. Kismet is that sole location. Even after months in Guatemala, days passed in Antigua, nights slept in the same hotel bed, have never rendered that feeling. Only Kismet has that honor and duty to me. Why that place?
The wind, the sea being at your doorstep, the kitchen table where I can sit and draw and read and eat bread with mango jam, Trish making me nachos in the afternoon, book shelves of books, outside showers, dogs that lick your feet. How can one not feel at home? How can one not feel compelled to sweep the floor of sand, to wash the dishes?
I often wonder if all this time south of the border has made me soft. I suppose it has, but I think that that is a good thing. I think that maybe that is what we need more of up north. I think all this romance and love for people in places that Latin America stirs up could benefit us all.
With that I leave you.