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Full Circle

Day 90: Baguio

Michael Palin - Full CircleGustav dresses himself as nonchalantly as he would had he just had a button sewn on. He says he feels fine but will not know if the 'operation' has worked for two or three weeks. Segundo has by now washed his hands and is ready to deal with further questioning in his usual breezy, matter-of-fact style.

'I have only one question,' I say. 'Do you use blood capsules?'

Segundo brushes away such a suggestion.

'You cannot see what I am doing without the third eye,' he says. 'What you see with two eyes is nothing.'

To my two logical, rationally-conditioned Western eyes none of what I saw at 114, Lourdes Grotto Road adds up to a row of beans. The snap sounded suspiciously like a pop, the blood looked phoney and there was no evidence of a cure. But superstition and magic have been so eradicated from our culture that we no longer know how to deal with them. In a way Reverend Segundo is right. To begin to understand the history, traditions and powers of the ethnic, pre-Hispanic mountain people from which he is descended, and many similar societies, we need at least to have an open mind - or a third eye. In the meantime, I have his business card.
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PALIN'S GUIDES

  • Series: Full Circle
  • Day: 90
  • Country/sea: Philippines
  • Place: Baguio
  • Book page no: 135

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