Eric's latest book
“MY BELOVED SOUTHWEST”
R. Eric Gustafson is a neo-renaissance man. His hats currently include those of a writer, lecturer, intrepid world traveler, photographer and bon vivant. . For the past decade, he has focused on writing about travel, particularly India where he spends three to five months annually.
Since childhood, exotic images of India have flooded my imagination. Doubtlessly spurred on by MGM adventure films and the Gunga Din ilk of literature. I grew up with a wonderment concerning the mysteries of that far-off subcontinent.
The advent of the Millennium seemed a propitious occasion for me to investigate her historic wonders, resulting from having the oldest on-going culture in the world --- ancient Hindu temples, Moslem mosques, a Jewish synagogue from the 1400;s and even vestiges of early Christian settlements that pre-dated those in the Western world. This was the birthplace of Buddha and the land of gurus and swamis, of silks, gems, sandalwood and incense, dressed or painted elephants, magnificent tigers and amazing albeit surly camels, enthralling Himalayan peaks, and long, ocean washed beaches along the Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal.
I was soon to learn to expect the unexpected and to realize that one is never bored in India with its intense vivacity, fearless use of color, and indulgence in the exotic. Also, I was to learn many useful things for a Westerner to realize: we are NOT the supreme beings of the world and it is necessary to examine a different mind set and way of thinking/behaving if our horizons are to be broadened.
Humility with grace is a gift I cherish from my diverse Indian experience over these past eleven years.
LINK to a You Tube Video featuring a play performance he was in June 2010 called