I’m back at my beloved haven in the hills. Buzzy, Rock and Bruiser are ecstatic to have me back. It’s so perfect here I often wonder why I ever leave. The first thing I saw while driving up to the house was a Forest Wagtail (Dendronanthus indicus), which means the migrants are back, which means the winds have changed and the north-east monsoon will soon be here – hopefully! I walk through the garden with the dogs. The herbs and veges are bursting forth – looking great. A Jungle Fowl (Gallus lafayettii) calls from the bottom of the garden. I go back in the house to unpack and turn on the Worldspace radio. Maestro channel has Andreas Scholl, contra-tenor, singing a section of Stabat Mater by Vivaldi, bird-song floats in through the windows – I feel so blessed! And then the spell is broken….

Heeey maaan! That sure was sooome party last night huh! How come you be up so early to make it all da way up here? Wow! Check out the sky maan, sooo clear and da trees – leaves all glistening. No wonder you be crazy bout dis place.

I say nothing – and get back to unpacking my bag. The music on Maestro has changed to a baroque(ish) piano and cello piece. Java hangs around. Bruiser is asleep on a dhurrie, Rock is at my feet and Buzz has his eye on a squirrel on the Guava tree. I unpack and put the things away. Java is rolling a joint. The piano and cello suite is still going on. The sound of the wind-chime outside adds to the chorus of bird-song and music. Magical moment. I bring this up with Java.

Lookey here maaan – dis is what Jah say what happen when you be one wit da universe. We Rastas do it wit da holy weed. You be lucky to savour da moment tru nature. When you be one wit da universe, particle theory, string theory, all dem udder theories– dey all fit da same scheme dat Jah put togedder at da birth of da cosmic burst maan – den we get da unified field theory. Supersymmetry maan – relatin da particles dat transmit da forces to da particles dat make up all matter. You be wit me maaan?

Java is into one of his theoretical physics ramblings and experience tells me not to get involved. I put the bag away and walk outside. Buzz, Rock and Bruiser follow. We go down the garden into the field below. There’s a thin mist still hanging over the hills beyond the fields, appropriately adding to the chill of the morning air. A mongoose (Herpestes edwardsi) darts across the path and the dogs follow. I shout at them to stop – to no avail. Fortunately the mongoose makes it to a tree and scrambles up. The dogs try to reach it, barking, all excited. It takes me awhile to distract them and get them away from the tree and from the mongoose that has now made itself comfortable on a branch with its eyes on the action below.

Hey maaan, check out dis fine sinsemilla..

Java’s joined us in the garden and hands me one of his specials. Its fragrance penetrates the morning air as I inhale deeply.

See what you mean about dis place maaan – veerrry special. Like Paradise in da middle of Hell.

And with that bit of wisdom he was gone – for the moment anyway. I head back to the house with the dogs.