Thursday, 7 January 2016

Friday, January 1st, 2016

Friday, January 1st, 2016
Toronto, Ontario


Mandala and I did trek along Danforth Ave, through Greektown, then onto the bridge overlooking the Don River, and finally retail and residential areas. It’s new territory for him, a native of Norwood, Ontario, population of 1200.

Now in a city of 6 million, it’s quite a leap for him as it was for me when I first moved into town in 1973. I actually come from a farm. As a 20 year-old I had that antsy feel, an itch to be in the larger metropolis, a place for greater opportunity. What an opportunity it was! In ’72 I made my first visit to a temple of sorts, a three storey rented house in the Cabbage town district, where Irish settlers came to start a new life in the 1800’s after a potato famine.

Mandala’s got Irish blood in him. Everyone knows the Irish are known for a fist and a beer, as well as the church and charm. With a name like Mcallister, it’s a giveaway. His first name Mandala is Sanskrit, a name given by his parents- first generation Krishna devotees in Canada. I remember Mandala was in diapers when I stopped into the house while on my first walk across country walk in ’96.

He’s a nice guy, always eager to serve with a great attitude. He’s liked by all. He’s experiencing temple/ashram life for the first time. He’s a natural. He will be accompanying me to India in February for a second time. It’s a second time because he’s a good person to have around, as much as it is to have a decent walking comrade and assistant.

Sorry Mandala, if it sounds like over-praise but complimenting someone is an integral part of the culture.

May the Source always be with you!

5 km


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