UNFINISHED DOCUMENTARY, STATE OF GRACE| Mid-1970s
Interviewee: ENRIQUE BRAVOCADO
I don’t like to fly, let me just put that out there. When I first met Zongo, I was a wreck, having just got off a flight from San Francisco. I guess we were actually on the same flight—I never realized that before—I didn’t notice him on the plane. Of course, I had my eyes closed most of the time doing my deep meditation to keep from freaking out. It would have been a real drag if I had lost it, as I was carrying enough primo seeds from Humboldt County to revolutionize the entire island strain.
Can you believe that when I started helping some of the local farmers grow, they didn’t even separate out their female plants? When I started pulling out the males by their roots, they thought I’d gone loco. After that first harvest, though, they all got on board.
Anyway, after Zongo and I did all the coke he was carrying, we were rapping and he started telling me about the Milakale property. I’d never heard of it, and I had been on island for a few years at that point. He said that some old lady he worked for from time-to-time in the City had inherited what remained of an old sugar plantation she had actually lived on as a kid and asked him to go check on the condition of the house that was there. Seeing how we were wired to the gills, we set out to find it as soon as we left the airport parking lot.
I was still bouncing around the island in my dilapidated VW bus in those days. The salt air finally killed that beast, just ended up rotting it down to the frame. It took us all afternoon to finally find what we though was the turn off to the property. I immediately could see why I had never noticed it; the whole place sat behind an impenetrable wall of jungle with no way of knowing just how deep it was. There was no way the bus was going to make it through, so we took off on foot hacking our way though with machetes.