Saturday, 13 August 2011

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

People by the Mountain

Morton, Washington

Walking on or around Mount Rainier, brought some responses from locals. Nothing out of the ordinary, but here were some reactions. The most asked question I get asked in my travels was posed four times in the last four days. “Are you Buddhist?” And perhaps the next most asked question which goes across the board anywhere in the world came up, “Can I take a picture of you?” One slow motorist on his way down the mountain rolled down his window and remarked, “You’re in better shape than I am!” An elderly cyclist with a firm look on his face, delivered, “God bless”. A middle aged woman stopped her vehicle to offer local blueberries, bless her heart. The most interested person was a Cambodian with his Korean wife. He asked the classic question, “Are you Buddhist?” My answer, “No, I am a Krishna monk. We believe in Krishna who is the speaker of Bhagavad Gita. He teaches about the soul, worship and devotion.” He was so charged up to put it in his words, “I really want to meet a master.” I don’t think I disappointed the man, but I did do what most of us Vaishnavas do, invite him to our nearest temple, which is Seattle. I presented more philosophical dialogue and gave him books to read. I do hope I will see him again, perhaps in Seattle when we perform the next day.

Not to do with road responses, but more so with an email message, someone got back to me with a really enthusiastic letter about his walking ventures. He calls himself ‘Walkabout’ and asked if I had heard of the Peace Pilgrim. It’s good to know there are others out there who have a passion for walking and a passion for talking about it.

18 KM

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