Cozy gathering at Liilamaya and Lalita’s home
I have visited the Sunshine Coast of Australia a few years ago, but didn’t know there was one in Canada, as well. Though, I had my doubts that the Pacific Northwest could really be a sunny place – indeed, the weather was beautiful and sunny the whole time! Spectacular islands and ocean – I even saw a seal, swimming and playing near a wharf.
I was invited by Liilamaya – who has been part of the Sojha kiirtan band, my very favorite kiirtan artists. A t his home, he and his partner Lalita a really sweet, cozy gathering of friends yesterday. He played kiirtan, accompanied by harmonium and cello. We had a short meditation, and divinely delicious vegetarian coconut curry!
I then shared about Romania and our children’s home, and I am delighted to announce that we have six new people joining our AMURTEL Family as sponsors for the children! I am so grateful!
Mark Benson – Fine Arts Photography!
LIilamaya – aka Mark Benson, had some really amazing artwork on his walls, that I was convinced were paintings. They turned out to be some of the most beautiful landscape photography I have ever seen. If you aren’t aware of his work, you must visit his website: Mark Benson Photography
Beach walk with Solstice
The next day, we showed up just minutes after the ferry between the Sunshine Coast and Vancouver closed the gates… but as a result, I got the chance to take Solstice, Liilamaya’s dog, for a walk to the beach. Gorgeous!
While walking with Solstice on the beach, she decided it was time to go home. Liilamaya had reassured me that she didn’t need a leash, and she was heading back on her own so I followed her.
On the path towards the house, I noticed, to my great surprise, considering the season, ripe blackberries growing by the side of the path. Curious, I reached for one of them, but it required leaning in over the bushes. As I did so, I had the thought that it would be bad to fall into the thorny bushes, especially wearing a sari….and just then I, of course, lost my balance.
I twisted to avoid completely landing into the bushes, but got rather scratched up. Meanwhile my sari was now inextricably tangled up in the thorns. Solstice didn’t even look back and was already out of sight. I carefully worked to extricate my sari from amongst the thorny bushes. When at last I was free, I couldn’t see Solstice, and got a bit worried. Returned to the house, and didn’t see her anywhere in sight….uh oh…Liilamaya – I think I lost your dog…. But I asked some children on little bicycles and they said they had seen a black and white dog and pointed in the direction of the house. I found her politely waiting for me in the back yard….
Hours later, after the dharmacakra in Vancouver, I realized that my hands and ankles were fully of nearly invisible, teeny, tiny little thorns that I couldn’t even see. Luckily a sister with younger eyes than I was able to find them and help take them out. Ouchy….