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The Beaded Tapestry

Exploring the writing and inspirations of Elisa Weeber

Letters from Victoria- Letter 46

Dear Annalis,

I have just brought to a close my third week with Nikolas and by the end was able to resume the wondrous activities the complex had to offer. I was unaware Nikolas shared my interest in fitness and he joined me on my daily runs. His pace is quite a bit faster than my own since he is fully acclimated to the higher altitude and has significantly longer limbs, but I have risen to the challenge as this plays into my competitive nature. I normally prefer my runs to be a solo activity, but for both the competitive and reclusive side of my nature the activity has done wonders for my recovery. By the end of my visit I had fallen into a daily routine, stabilizing my physical as well as mental health with normality. I am amazed how quickly my system adjusted to the conditions and by the end I was able to match my running duration and speed with that of my desert statistics. This was opportune since the daily culinary meditations with Nikolas would quickly have changed my physique had I not created a counter balance. The evening rituals were not always as elaborate compared to those first two experiences, but they remained a focal point of my daily litany. Nikolas included a few lessons, allowing me to handle his precious utensils during my attempts to duplicate his instructions. I do not think I could ever come close to reproducing any of his amazing creations, but at least my meals will be more palpable when I return to the studio.

It was a bleak day when my visit came to a close. Water dripped from the eaves of the complex and mist shrouded the entire top of the cliff side robbing me of a final glimpse of the Equine from this vantage point. To relieve this disappointment, I made one final visit to the amphitheatre, filling my system with the soothing vibration, saying farewell to the wondrous experience before my departure. I will miss Nikolas, but my greatest forfeiture will be the intense auditory relationship with the Equine I have gained from this trip. I will have to discover an alternative to this aspect of the Equine at my studio, but I know it will only be a poor substitute for the amphitheater’s reality.

I am now headed home once again, full of hope and enthusiasm. It was difficult leaving Nikolas and his wondrous home but the anticipation of returning to my work has made it bearable. The first two legs of my return trip are complete and I am now sitting in the Geotrain watching the landscape fly by. The humidity in the atmosphere drops as we head away from the sea and enter the desert belt of New London. The view of the Equine is also transforming, becoming more outlined and focused with every kilometer as the mist dissipates from the air. Unfortunately the new found aural aspects of the Equine are also fading, pushed to the back of my senses and once again becoming a dim echo like drum beats in the distance. I cannot dismiss this sensation entirely even if I desired as it seems to be etched in the chemistry of my being. It remains a constant reminder of my new found affinity with the creature. I am not sure what this will do to my visual representation for the Louvre but I would not negate the encounter I had on the ferry or the amphitheater at the complex even if I could. It was a pivotal point of my time here on New London and an intricate part of my recovery. I must in all fairness give credit to Nikolas as I would still be sitting alone in the dark if not for his ministrations at the end of that first week. I feel this added aspect of my Equine relationship will be beneficial to our project, but we will have to wait and see how it propagates itself into my work. The ultimate test will occur when I am back in the studio with drawing implements in hand. Pointedly I did not bring any of my artistic tools with me on this voyage, not even a pencil, so I will have to be patient for a little longer to try out my theory. I was tempted to produce a graphic representation on my wrist pad just to relieve the suspense but I have abstained from this urge and decided to write to you instead. Ones and zeroes were never meant to represent artistic endeavors although I am sure many neural visionaries will say I am alone in this opinion. Although I love this type of reproduction created directly out of the signals from the brain, they all seem so distant and unemotional as the other categories of the arts. I know we disagree on this subject, but it will not convince me to turn to this alternative when there is nothing else to draw with.

I find myself looking inward on this return journey a little to frequently as I sit alone in my cabin wishing for some outlet for my visions. There are fewer passengers sharing my travels this time so I cannot even use socialization as a distraction. The Equine presence also is not helping as it is just a reminder of what my hand desires to be doing. So once again I have turned to you for comfort and distraction. I can imagine that the staff on board your transport are just starting their emergence from stasis, slowly allowing their thoughts to turn to the preparation of the ship for its rendezvous with the Phycodurus-8. The lab station also will be preparing for your arrival. Arranging your new home for occupancy and saying farewell to the staff that will be exiting their posts. I feel a tinge of envy that you will be seeing the unobstructed view of the Equine soon. As amazing as it is from New London, it is an altogether different animal compared to what you will be privileged to in the next two years. I hope all the equipment I installed for you is producing the results you desire and expect. I have not received any update from the lab planner responsible for the upkeep of your lab since the initial communication almost a year ago. Since her instruction were only to contact me if there were major issues affecting the data output, this seems like a good thing. We will have to see once you arrive and have evaluated the accumulated data, just how successful the lab has performed. This will be the hardest month for me. Trying to concentrate when you are so close. I hope all went according to routine for your stasis during the voyage. There were many augmented people at the mountain complex and I thought of your own addition every time I ran across them. Many had horror stories of their stasis process similar to what Nikolas experienced. Returning to full consciousness unable to move with the surrounding world out of phase with their own condition. For most like Nikolas it was only for a few weeks, but for one woman with sight augmentation she did not return to her normal state for several months after her arrival on New London. As usual many at the mountain complex were adapted by choice, adding a cybernetic device to emphasize one of the attributes of the Equine , but many such as this woman and Nikolas were not, being equipped mechanical or having regenerated adjustments to repair a defect from birth or mishap. My thoughts turned to you every time I saw an obvious replacement limb, happy that you choose the regeneration path. It may be trendy with certain genres but when it is not a choice but a tragic after effect, I don’t think it is ideal to see a daily reminder in the mirror. It does not draw my attention when I look at Nikolas as it did on the Derringer when we first met. It seems to be such a part of him now and an augmentation to his work. Something about the color spectrum and knowing how something will taste without ever having to try it. He attempted several times to explain this superpower of his but I as a mere mortal was unable to comprehend. It is enough to know that he is satisfied with his condition. Not only because he is a generational icon but also a member of the super human race. An Equine cyborg for lack of another nomenclature. I really am going to miss him.

I have received no communication from either Addison or Katryna during my hiatus from the studio, so I hope all is prepared for my arrival. The desire to resume my craft is a bit overwhelming at the moment and I do not want myriads of unpleasant tasks to fill my time before I am able to dedicate myself to my workshop. I hope their silence means all has gone to plan and there are no surprises when I appear.

We are passing into the darkness of the night so I will close for now. , I think I will pursue the meditation guide Nikolas gave me as a parting gift. It is the only memento I took away from that wonderful place and I hope someday I will be able to return, Not only for Nikolas but also for the Equine.

Love always,

Victoria

Project 17 – Progress update – Warning – Genetic engineering used in this area

Almost at the halfway point. The difference between the last project using myriads of colors and this three color creation is huge.

Letters from Victoria- Letter 45

Dear Annalis,

I have just brought to a close my third week with Nikolas and by the end was able to resume the wondrous activities the complex had to offer. I was unaware Nikolas shares my interest in fitness and he joined me on my daily runs. His pace is quite a bit faster than my own since he is fully acclimated to the higher altitude and has significantly longer limbs, but I have risen to the challenge as this plays into my competitive nature. I normally prefer my runs to be a solo activity, but for both the competitive and reclusive side of my nature the activity has done wonders for my recovery. By the end of my visit I had fallen into a daily routine, stabilizing my physical as well as mental health with normality. I am amazed how quickly my system adjusted to the conditions and by the end I was able to match my running duration and speed with that of my desert statistics. This was opportune since the daily culinary meditations with Nikolas would quickly have changed my physique had I not created a counter balance. The evening rituals were not always as elaborate compared to those first two experiences, but they remained a focal point of my daily litany. Nikolas included a few lessons, allowing me to handle his precious utensils during my attempts to duplicate his instructions. I do not think I could ever come close to reproducing any of his amazing creations, but at least my meals will be more palpable when I return to the studio.

It was a bleak day when my visit came to a close. Water dripped from the eaves of the complex and mist shrouded the entire top of the cliff side robbing me of a final glimpse of the Equine from this vantage point. To relieve this disappointment, I made one final visit to the amphitheatre to fill my system with the soothing vibration, saying farewell to the wondrous experience before my departure. I will miss Nikolas, but my greatest forfeiture will be the intense auditory relationship with the Equine I have gained from this trip. I will have to discover an alternative to this aspect of the Equine at my studio, but I know it will only be a poor substitute for the amphitheater’s reality.

I am now headed home once again, full of hope and enthusiasm. It was difficult leaving Nikolas and his wondrous home but the anticipation of returning to my work has made it bearable. The first two legs of my return trip are complete and I am now sitting in the Geotrain watching the landscape fly by. The humidity in the atmosphere drops as we head away from the sea and enter the desert belt of New London. The view of the Equine is also transforming, becoming more outlined and focused with every kilometer as the mist dissipates from the air. Unfortunately the new found aural aspects of the Equine are also fading, pushed to the back of my senses and once again becoming a dim echo like drum beats in the distance. I cannot dismiss this sensation entirely even if I desired as it seems to be etched in the chemistry of my being. It remains a constant reminder of my new found affinity with the creature. I am not sure what this will do to my visual representation for the Louvre but I would not negate the encounter I had on the ferry or the amphitheater at the complex even if I could. It was a pivotal point of my time here on New London and an intricate part of my recovery. I must in all fairness give credit to Nikolas as I would still be sitting alone in the dark if not for his ministrations at the end of that first week. I feel this added aspect of my Equine relationship will be beneficial to our project, but we will have to wait and see how it propagates itself into my work. The ultimate test will occur when I am back in the studio with drawing implements in hand. Pointedly I did not bring any of my artistic tools with me on this voyage, not even a pencil, so I will have to be patient for a little longer to try out my theory. I was tempted to produce a graphic representation on my wrist pad just to relieve the suspense but I have abstained from this urge and decided to write to you instead. Ones and zeroes were never meant to represent artistic endeavors although I am sure many neural visionaries will say I am alone in this opinion. Although I love this type of reproduction created directly out of the signals from the brain, they all seem so distant and unemotional as the other categories of the arts. I know we disagree on this subject, but it will not convince me to turn to this alternative when there is nothing else to draw with.

I find myself looking inward on this return journey a little to frequently as I sit alone in my cabin wishing for some outlet for my visions. There are fewer passengers sharing my travels this time so I cannot even use socialization as a distraction. The Equine presence also is not helping as it is just a reminder of what my hand desires to be doing. So once again I have turned to you for comfort and distraction. I can imagine that the staff on board your transport are just starting their emergence from stasis, slowly allowing their thoughts to turn to the preparation of the ship for its rendezvous with the Phycodurus-8. The lab station also will be preparing for your arrival. Arranging your new home for occupancy and saying farewell to the staff that will be exiting their posts. I feel a tinge of envy that you will be seeing the unobstructed view of the Equine soon. As amazing as it is from New London, it is an altogether different animal compared to what you will be privileged to in the next two years. I hope all the equipment I installed for you is producing the results you desire and expect. I have not received any update from the lab planner responsible for the upkeep of your lab since the initial communication almost a year ago. Since her instruction were only to contact me if there were major issues affecting the data output, this seems like a good thing. We will have to see once you arrive and have evaluated the accumulated data, just how successful the lab has performed. This will be the hardest month for me. Trying to concentrate when you are so close. I hope all went according to routine for your stasis during the voyage. There were many augmented people at the mountain complex and I thought of your own addition every time I ran across them. Many had horror stories of their stasis experience similar to what Nikolas experienced. Returning to full consciousness unable to move with the surrounding world out of phase with their own condition. For most like Nikolas it was only for a few weeks, but for one woman with sight augmentation she did not return to her normal state for several months after her arrival on New London. As usual many at the mountain complex were adapted by choice, adding a cybernetic device to emphasize one of the attributes of the Equine , but many such as this woman and Nikolas were not, being equipped mechanical or regenerated adjustments to repair a defect from birth or mishap. My thoughts turned to you every time I saw a obvious replacement limb, happy that you choose the regeneration path. It may be trendy with certain genres but when it is not a choice but a tragic after effect, I don’t think it is ideal to see a daily reminder in the mirror. It does not draw my attention when I look at Nikolas as it did on the Derringer when we first met. It seems to be such a part of him now and an augmentation to his work. Something about the color spectrum and knowing how something will taste without ever having to try it. He attempted several times to explain this superpower of his but I as a mere mortal was unable to comprehend. It is enough to know that he is satisfied with his condition. Not only because he is a generational icon but also a member of the super human race. An Equine cyborg for lack of another nomenclature. I really am going to miss him.

I have received no communication from either Addison or Katryna during my hiatus from the studio, so I hope all is prepared for my arrival. The desire to resume my craft is a bit overwhelming at the moment and I do not want myriads of unpleasant tasks to fill my time before I am able to dedicate myself to my workshop. I hope their silence means all has gone to plan and there are no surprises when I appear.

We are passing into the darkness of the night so I will close for now. , I think I will pursue the meditation guide Nikolas gave me as a parting gift. It is the only memento I took away from that wonderful place and I hope someday I will be able to return, Not only for Nikolas but also for the Equine.

Love always,

Victoria

Project 17 – Warning – Genetic engineering used in this area

Start of my next project. A request from my son.

Letters from Victoria- Letter 44

The flow of the current buffets against her surface. Life stirs within the long dormant sensors buried deep in the nucleus of her collapsed form. Slowly and tentatively she extends an array of sensors, allowing each to awaken and begin the analyses of the composite creating the tidal phenomenon against her. Even though she condensed her form when grief gripped her, she can still detect the initial disruption her entry has produced in this sector. The outward flow of filaments that were once her fellow creatures, create an eddy around her compact form. Waves propagate outwards from her entry point, echos of the disruption she produced upon her escape from her shrinking cosmos. Interference patterns appear in the strong ebb flowing past her when the waves from her entry meet the waves from her former race originating in a distant emerging point. The sensation is not altogether unpleasant and even though she is but one entity, she is able to withstand the bombardment without losing momentum. It is not discernible how long she has remained in this continuum or even if any time has elapsed since she collapsed into her shell of oblivion, but the changes to her surroundings are immediately evident as the first of her sensor arrays fully extend. The propagation of her fellow companions has been effective. Individual filaments have combined to create energy producing structures, choosing a final frequency to solidify their purpose. The space is still prolific with composite material dispersed from her former home ebbing away from their emerging point searching for their own wavelength to obtain harmony. The tidal sensation now brings comfort in place of the initial aversion that drove her away. She marvels at the new creations her race has become as she studies the surrounding sectors of space. Life giving environments have appeared during her hibernation, beginning a new cycle of existence for her once vast civilization. She begins the process of expansion, allowing her compact form to reach outward to explore this new nearly infinite space.

Dear sister,

This entry has brought peace to my troubled anima. Picturing the emerging world through the Equines vision has renewed my focus on the future ahead. The decision to return to the dream journal right away was a difficult one but I know if I did not I would lose my courage to ever open their pages again. The last entry still does not clarify any time reference for the Equine narrative but the altered mood of the creature in this episode has resulted in the right response in me.

I have returned to the amphitheatre almost every day and it has replace the monolith of contemplation as my favorite haunt here. The auditory relationship I have built with the Equine has been beneficial to my mental repair more than any type of meditation could. Even with my eyes closed the presence of the creature is evident as the vibrations pass through me nervous system. The sound entering my ears combines with the throb of my blood creating a harmonic chord that reaches every point in my body. I can even detect the distant sorrow hidden within the music of the Equine without allowing it to overpower me. It gives me the perception that I am sharing my pain with the creature in such a way that the combining of our rhythms is healing us both. I imagine the vortex created by the sound particles congregating on the center platform of the chamber intermix with the ever innovating mass of the Equines former universe. The experience draws me away from my current location and hurls me once again into the world of the Equine. I see now what is drawing the creature to us. In some eclectic way she is retaining contact with her former existence by creating a bond with matter created by their destruction.

I have tried to expand my experience here by visiting all the areas of the complex but I am continually drawn back to the shell by the sea. There have been no revelations on how to incorporate the auditory aspects of the Equine into our work but the practice has allowed my mind to heal. My psyche has transformed from a black void to a multi-faceted window showing a different view everytime I look within. I find myself once again itching to capture the creature on canvas and return to my work. Once this next week is over I will be prepared to start the next and most difficult phase of our project on my part. I cannot dwell too heavily on this task since it is still months away and your arrival at the space station will occur first. Then I can begin planning for this stage as I will then have your immediate support and advice to fall back on. It will not be easy cutting all contact with the Equine for the duration of this work but we both know how crucial it is. The optimist in me believes I will be fully prepared by then. The pessimist sees disaster and despair. We will have to see which one wins out.

I anxiously await your arrival,

Love

Victoria.

Letters from Victoria – Letter 43

Dearest sister,

My thoughts are with you at the end of this first week at the mountain complex. This morning at first light I finally found the strength to pull myself away from the edge of the abyss I have stood on the last few days. Diving into the Equine journal on my third day here did not guide me to the closure I envisioned. I have been led to the brink of an emotional fissure that I struggled for three days to avoid plummeting into. I have finally moved away from this darkness with the help of Nikolas and am now prepared to relate the following passage to you:

For the first instance since emerging into this space she allows herself to travel away from her chosen temporal span and visit the end of all things. For her is it a beginning, a chance to expand the horizon of her existence. To extend her limits and knowledge. For the others, her intricate companions, an end to their former existence. The revelation returns from the long hidden rooms within her vast network, bringing with it the devastating loneliness it invoked. When her degraded form exited the slice in dark space she became aware that the delicate bonds holding together the energy of her form were strained under the extreme condition they had endured. With great effort and intricate manipulation she completes the emergence into this new existence barely retaining the ability to reform her structure. As her sensors rebuild one unit at a time they begin to pick up vast clouds of filaments propagating this macrocosm. Full realization comes to her when she discerns what here sensors are detecting. The success of her incredible effort has allowed her to retain the ability to reconstruct after her emergence. This is not the fate for her former cohabitants. She has entered into a cosmos consisting exclusively of the remains of her populous. Her first reaction is to pull herself away from what she conceives to be lifeless disintegrated bodies floating around her. The torn apart remains of once beautiful beings capable of wondrous harmonies is all she can visualize. The urge to pull away is difficult to avoid but she forces herself to make a closer examination. She perceives that the surrounding material is not lifeless. Each filament maintains an individual vibration, retaining a semblance of its former identity. She pauses, feeling the music and pattern emissions of each individual particle, analyzing the energy signature as they flow past. Slowly time moves away from the initial event and she begins to observe her once fellow inhabitants begin to take on new form, changing their patterns and frequencies to find new purpose. There is joy in her for a few moments before she realized that even though the basic elements of her former race have survived they will never be capable of returning to their previous form. She is alone in a chaotic universe, the last of her species. The only evidence of her once teaming cosmos. The loss overpowers her and she shuts down, pulling in all sensors and collapsing her vast network.

I could not bring myself to continue with the journal at this point. There are only two entries left and I fear somehow the Equine is slowly pulling away from me and saying goodbye. I found no desire to view the Creature over the last few days as it only brings back the memory of its torment at the loss it had experienced. I felt the full emotional blow as I read through the pages. It was as if the loss was my own. When I finally pulled the curtains to reveal the sunlit world outside this morning I was stunned to see the creature floating above the aquamarine sea just as it has appeared for centuries here. There was no decay apparent in its form as my dark thoughts had envisioned. No withdrawal into the dark, only the ever present vision I had painted almost every day since I was able to hold a paint brush. My mind grasps at the concept that the Equine is relating events long past in this regions history or even something in the far future. I explained my feeling before that time seems a different concept to the entity. I am not sure if this thought comforts me or increases my alarm. I do know this small amount of uncertainty in relationship to the journal meaning allowed me to pull myself away from the hole I was staring into the last few days. I will now have to begin my recovery anew from this point. Nikolas has made a start, actually pulling himself away from his work to assist me out of my dark mood. I am now ready to proceed. My mind has decided this last entry is a chronicle of something in our past and I will not awaken one day to see the Equine collapsing forever beyond my perception. It would be very opportune for the Equine to begin its expansion toward the Flynn foundations sector of space right now. Nothing would relieve me more than the reversal of the vision I saw as I read the last words of the journal entry. Distancing myself from the vision of the actual creature over the last few day and blocking all reminders was not the answer to my dark mood.

I think I will sleep now. I have been reluctant to close my eyes over the last three nights, fearful of what the dawn would bring.

Wishing you better thoughts in deep slumber.

Love

Victoria

Project 16 – Dreams of Vincent Complete

This was a very difficult choice for a project. Here is a comparison of the original painting and the finished work. I think something a little easier for my next creation. Any suggestion for the finishing of this piece? It is about 4" X 4" or 10cm X 10cm Would like to finish it as something functional.

Project 16 – Dreams of Vincent – Two palette creation

Nearing the end of this project. First time I had to add a second palette to organize the various colors.

Letters From Victoria – Letter 42

Dear Annalis,

As promised a continuation of my introduction to this wonderful place. I will keep this narrative in roughly chronological order although my temptation is to begin with the meal Nikolas prepared for me. My second day began with a much needed run over the various trails crisscrossing the surrounding area. The equilibrium imbalance I experienced on the trip here has completely disappeared and my system is slowly starting to adjust to the higher altitude of this region, Even so, my lungs limited me to a slow pace enabling them to grow accustomed to the lower oxygen content here. I did manage to complete an hour of constant mobility before returning to the complex for a much welcomed breakfast. The early morning coffee Nicolas had served me was long gone as I settled down to a simple meal of cereal and fruit pilfered from his pantry. After he made my coffee earlier he was quickly away to his laboratory anxious to begin his creative day. He is as driven as I am if not more when it come to his project and he warned me it would be a late hour before he returned for our dinner, Even during the preparation of our coffee I could hear him talking to himself, analyzing the different chemical reactions of the brewing process and how it could be manipulated to enhance the result. I brought him a few beverage selections from the shop in Newton to thank him for the invitation to visit here. It seems like such a small gesture on my part in comparison to this incredible experience but he seemed to be genuinely pleased with my gift. He has used the variety of coffee beans each morning for the two of us but has retained the selection of herbal tea ingredients I included for his experimental kitchen. It seems at least two of the herbal additives I brought him are not easy to obtain in this area. The pytherium was of special interest to him since he had not encountered this material before and the osmanthus I cultivate in my own hydroponic garden was also new to him. They are both southern sourced plants so they are logically not easy to obtain here. I was surprised he was unfamiliar with the pytherium since it is widely used in the area where I live.

After my run and the replenishment of my nutrients I set out to explore the complex. They have a number of activities planned each day, all focusing around the Equine. The establishment is broken into different section, each concentrating on a separate faculty. The area just below the housing area is dedicated to the visual perspective of the creature. This includes a traditional art and sculpture studio but also offered a virtual theatre displaying the Equine from different perspectives in space. I pointedly avoided this area and headed for the auditory center instead. I had hopes of recreating the wave sensations I experienced on the ferry trip here and this seemed the logical place to expand this type of perspective and steer my mind away from my project at home. The sound perception area is located in the lower section of the main building, dominated by a large amphitheatre that opens to the sea. It is carved directly into the cliffside rock, sixty meters below the stone outcropping containing the monolith of contemplation. The shell shaped structure is immense, able to accommodate several thousand people for scheduled music events. Unfortunately there are none planned during my stay here, but there are several classes on focusing the aural property of the Equine. I attended one of these demonstrations, standing within the focal point of the amphitheatre training my body to detect the incoming waves from the Equine. The most difficult part of the exercise was quieting the mind in order to focus only on the auditory part of the body. With eyes closed, we reached out our perception across the open expanse of the auditorium allowing the incoming waves propagating in from the surface of the sea to enter the vortex of air inside the center of the carved out stone shell. It was similar to the manifestations I experienced on the ferry but intensified. The feeling of something just out of hearing was gone replaced by an allover vibration soaking into my bones and traveling along my spine to finally exit into the rock through the souls of my feet. I felt like a lightening rod collecting the sound particle out of the air and focusing them down to a single stream flowing through my body before directing them into the rock below. Once again the sensation stayed with me long after I left the demonstration. Another surprising aspect of the Equine I did not expect to experience.

I returned to Nikolas's quarters ravenous from my day. I restrained my desire to relieve my hunger in anticipation of the evening meal. I busied myself making notes on the occurrences of the day while I waited impatiently for Nikolas to arrive. It was late as he predicted when he entered the door laden with the bounties of his craft. Several of his team accompanied him, also carrying various pieces of equipment and consumables. To my surprise they deposited these on the large work surface in his kitchen and after given a short salute to the two of us, left the premises. I was then treated to the most incredibly intimate culinary adventure I have ever had. Nikolas began by describing his culinary philosophy and the history behind his concepts. A follower of the eighteenth century practice of Transcendental gastronomy, Nikolas explained how he became fascinated with this practice after reading an ancient book written by Jean Anthelme Brillet-Squarine mapping out this discipline. The ancient manual drove his craft to new extremes in culinary experimentation and set the bases for his future endeavors. The process Nikolas finally settled on uses a combination of the practice of this ancient meditation philosophy with the scientific molecular methods introduced in the twenty-first century. The mix creates an atmosphere that promotes and encourages the diner to savor every bite of substinance and analyze the texture of the ingredients. Allowing each morsel to remain in the mouth until the full chemical reaction is experience to completion before ingestion. It sounds strange when I try to describe it. There are not really sufficient words to do it justice. After his explanation Nikolas then proceeded to demonstrate the various techniques used in his kitchen. We sat well into the night, talking and tasting. Discussing each plate of morsels as if we were art critics at a gallery opening. Some of the dishes were in my eyes to elegant to eat but Nikolas encouraged their destruction with each offering explaining their background history and connection to the Equine. He taught me how best to enjoy each dishes taste and form using meditation and visual techniques pulled from his study. He used the majority of his processes during the performance ranging from spherification to produce his honey caviar with black mushrooms, to foam production for his artichoke and espresso nebulas. Strangely we continued to consume for several hours but I never felt saturated. The last dish of olive oil bubbles encasing wild fungi left an aura of satisfaction that no dessert on Earth had ever produced in me. I remained in a state of enamoured admiration at the abilities of this incredible man as I assisted him, clearing the kitchen of all evidence of our culinary journey. We then stepped out of the house for a short walk to “assist in the process of our natural digestion”. Nikolas fell silent as we passed over the dark paths of the complex allowing each of us a quiet moment to contemplate the experience we had just had. My mind traveled back to the past hours as I gazed up at the Equine in the night sky and realized the creature had remained in my thoughts throughout the entire meal, injecting itself into every bite and flavoring every morsel. I remembered the revelation that I was tasting a small piece of the creature every nibble I consumed. Each creation contained a focal ingredient as the previous night’s offerings but the finished products Nikolas created had an added aspect not included by his staff. The rosewater crystals he created half way through the meal were stained the exact tint of the flowing limbs of the anomaly. The acacia honey mixed with black tea formed a living sculpture of spider web filaments representing the signals emanating from the equine. Each delicate thread an explosion of flavors when broken off and consumed. My mind raced on and on as we walked, making each meaningful connection as I thought of the experience as a whole. Nikolas glanced over at me as we arrived before his door and smiled. “Now you have the full story.” He said then turned and walked inside. It will be difficult to return to my boring soups and concoctions once I return to my studio in a few weeks. I did not think it was possible to learn two new methods allowing me to experience the Equine in one day. I am glad to be proved wrong.

Let us see what the rest of my visit will bring. Tomorrow I feel ready to return to the Equine Journal. The prediction is for stormy weather so it seems an opportune time to continue with my study.

Love,

Victoria

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