Padayatra America Report 7/23 update
Posted July 31, 2003
June 24 , 2003 (from the diary of a Padayatri)
It was around 60 degrees last night. Today we start our day on Route 522, the sun is strong today. Who is next? Where? How? The holy name! Krsna Conscious Literature! Prasadam! Darshan! Donation! Laxmi! Hearing!! Ki Jaya.
We stop mid-day at a boat sales store and many people came to ask what we were doing. Some took prasadam, books and gave donation. Someone came to buy the Peacock feather fan of Their Lordships, Sorry we can't sell that! He gave a donation anyways. Someone else donated oats for the horses, carrots, a lady came and brought cold drinking water for the devotees and deities.
It's 4:30 pm and I am seeing Govardhan limp a little bit, Hare Krsna Hare Krsna......slowly we move on. As it gets dark we stop in an open field in the side of a cemetery. At 9:00 pm a policeman came asking; if we had permission.....well, just see what we are doing and we can't move on. At that moment the owner came in an angry mood. Immediately the police said, "hey they are doing missionary work" so he cooled down and let us stay for the night - but we would have to leave ASAP in the morning. Govardhan is liming even more now, I doubt that he will be able to move on tomorrow; anyway I am tired let's go to sleep and see what happens tomorrow. Hare Krsna.
June 25, 2003 (from the diary of a Padayatri)
It was around 60 degrees again last night. Today is Ekadasi, which means Nirjala for me.
Govardhan cannot continue. The Sun is strong today and we don't have any shade (except the wagon), I feel helpless......I turn to Their Lordships. "Oh my Lord, Nitai Gaurasundar, Narasimhadeva, this is your Padayatra. I want to keep going with Your mission, but I am not in control. Govardhan das can not even walk; we cannot stay here today, we don't know anybody - only you can make the proper arrangements for us to move on."
It's getting hot, around 80 degrees. After a few minutes "Mr. Ralph" appeared. "Hey, what are you guys doing?". He just lives next door and has come to offer his place - whatever we need (phone, water, shade). Then sometime later one lady came, she was attracted to the horses, and this was another arrangement of the Lord. She (Mrs. Lee) helped us with everything, phone # of a veterinarian, food for horses. I had an opportunity to preach for almost an hour when we went to find a trailer to carry the horses. She offered her farm as a sanctuary for Govardhan to recover; the farm was only 3 1/2 miles away. We talked about Karma, reincarnation and Krsna. She was intelligent, usually the majority of the people are pious but not always intelligent, and so to have a deep conversation of how to come to that position of love for Krsna is very tasteful. I did not even feel it was Nirjala Ekadasi, or the temperature which was now up to 95 degrees and all the other difficulties we were facing. Hare Krsna Hare Krsna we move on.....
The preaching continued, a little later a veterinarian came to check Govardhan. A newspaper lady also came and Candrabhaga d. very expertly preached to her for 30 minutes. The lady took pictures, asked many nice questions, she took prasadam and a book.
A lot of people are coming now to see us. Two elderly ladies say, "We are just curious, I've been seeing you for a few days." Then someone else came and was engaged in helping with the horses. Someone else came with something to drink, other people visiting the cemetery stop to see and hear. Mr. Ralph came back with his family to check in with us. We had found a trailer to transport the horses, but what about the wagon? So he offered to haul it with one of his company vans. So here we are in a convoy / caravan with Mrs. Lee and co. in the front, followed by the horses in the trailer, and in the rear Mr. Ralph with his workers hauling the Deities with Prabhu. Hare Krsna Hare Krsna moving on....
Finally at 5 pm we are in the Kunja where Their Lordships want to have a retreat. The place is beautiful, in front of Their Lordships is a pond with trees and the horses are very comfortable facing the pond. We will be here for some time tending the foot of Govardhan das.
Another conversation with "Mike", Mrs. Lee's husband was intense. Very intelligent man and pious - he asked, he understood and caught many deep points about how to live without attachment; he was very appreciative and very helpful. He offered his place for the time we need it. Krsna knows....I thank Their Lordships for this day of so called "difficulties" because without difficulties we will never be able to meet such nice people, people who are ready to receive mercy. Their Lordships know perfectly Where? How? And to whom the mercy should be distributed, and I pray to be able to be a transparent medium in such distribution.
Let's see what happens. Govardhan will not be able to make it, if we think
in a long term program; his hooves are very weak and are regularly
breaking. He also had some problems in his feet that in a long term can
cause problems. Their Lordships want this program to become strong so in a
steady way we will be able to move on from North to South America. They
have engaged Govardhan das for sometime and now they have someone else in
mind to do the service. Personally I don't know how the things will take
place, but Their Lordships will make perfect arrangements because we have
hundreds and thousands of towns and villages ahead of us.