Not Africa/Not Heaven
Was I happy to see Josh (short for Joshveer) from South Africa newly arrived. This young chap is leading man material for some upcoming dramas I'm planning to stage. I've worked with him in Durban and I slipped the idea by him when he was back in his country, "Why don't you come to Canada? We could form a serious troupe." And so he agreed and had arrived just hours before I returned.
As is usual, I introduce newcomers to my favourite japa walking trails. "It's a whole new foliage here for you, Josh. That's a maple tree. It provides the greatest syrup. There's poison ivy. Stay away from it. Here's a mulberry tree. Pick! Aren't they tasty? IN the pond you see goldfish. Oh! A turtle! Natvie blue wild flower. It's chickory. Maybe it's not foreign to you. Look! A red winged black bird, very territorial! There's some squirrels. They look like cute rats with bushy Hare Krishna hair tails at the end." for Josh, it's a new world - a change from monkeys, zebras, lions, elephants and everything African. He is surprised to see few homes with walls and barbed wire around them. "It's all very open, Josh."
After the initiation walk, he had to deal with jet lag dynamics and rested.
I received a call from Vrnda, our spiritual facilitator in Winnipeg, that a dear godsister, Ghandiva, student of Srila Prabhupad, is in a coma and doctors inform that she will not revive again. Ghandiva has been struggling with health issues for some time including diabetes. She was one of the earlier pioneers for establishing the consciousness of Krishna in Mumbai. She spent some years living in L.A. and the last years in Manitoba, Canada.
I make an appeal to all walking monk readers to please throw a prayer out there for this good soul who lives in a desperate situation at the moment.
Please wish Ghandiva well.