"SO WHEN DO I GET TO TRY THE STUFF?" I ask Ali. He's been hinting for weeks about my initiation, but then it's only abstractly, and he speaks of "possibilities," and all we have seen so far are long bumpy roads and more and more mountains. I'm not convinced we're anywhere near the desert, the way these peaks keep peeking out one behind the next.
"Well, you know what I mean. . . ."
"It is imperative to arrive at jikuli clean, or at least cleansed of troubled intention and flippant misapprehensions. The crossing of the mountains by foot is the best injunction of powerful purpose."
"You have to call him appropriately: jikuli. It's as if someone were to say to you 'hey lady' . . . you must speak respectfully, like 'miss'."
Murdock used to call me WOMAN, and I have to admit--although I understand Ali's point--I kind of liked it.