nary a murmur or complaint

Friday, February 26, 2016 | |

In Big Bend National Park, six days after the tourists arrived in the U.S., an undercover park ranger spotted the white Tahoe in campsite #16. The ranger pitched a tent beside the five tourists, 20 yards away, where he could safely observe them. The park straddles the Texas-Mexico border, and over the serrated brown mountains the sun was setting and the moon hung faintly in the sky like a watermark. One of the tourists had angled his camera atop a tripod to take a photo. Posing as a fellow camper, the undercover ranger chatted with the photographer, remarking on the pleasantness of the 80-degree weather, and the beauty of the desert. At night, the five foreigners slipped into their tents. At 2 a.m., the ranger bugged their Tahoe with a GPS tracking device.

I remember the feverish week when I read “Love In the Time of Cholera” by Gabriel Garcia-Marquez and my heart travelled a thousand miles all while sitting there drinking coffee.

Real-life personCharacter name
Jack KerouacRay Smith
Gary SnyderJaphy Ryder
Allen GinsbergAlvah Goldbook
Neal CassadyCody Pomeray
Philip WhalenWarren Coughlin
Locke McCorkleSean Monahan
John MontgomeryHenry Morley
Philip LamantiaFrancis DaPavia
Michael McClureIke O'Shay
Peter OrlovskyGeorge
Kenneth RexrothRheinhold Cacoethes
Alan WattsArthur Whane
Caroline KerouacNin
Carolyn CassadyEvelyn
Claude DalenbergBud Diefendorf
Natalie JacksonRosie Buchanan