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Published: April 12th 2010
One of the most noticeable factors since leaving and returning to Jadan is the increase in temperature. Summer is certainly on the way. We've gone village style here and the water taps have been taped up. It means we now ferry water in buckets and it's meant to be rationed. Just how much water we were previously and currently using will remain a mystery however, considering there is no water meter to give us the stats. It is a good opportunity to bring some more water awareness and reinforce the trust factor. Conveniently the fill up point is right out the front of my door!
With the warmer weather, the mossies are making themselves known a little more frequently. India's 'village pharmacy', the Neem tree has been reminding us of it's dominance. Many leaves are falling with the heat, in contrast to how they fall with the cold in other climates. The smell of the developing neem blossom is divine..... Ganga rocks we transported back from Haridwar have been placed in new homes to continue Pushpaji's 'Jadan Dry Rock Mulching' project.
Gardeners are busy defining mulch/water rings for all of the trees. Late night watering has also stepped up
the pace and there are trucks filling up from the well and ferrying water around well into the sleeping hours, enabling us to continue enjoying the luxury of trees in our desert surrounds.
Six of the college girls that I teach have moved into our building. I'm keeping an eye on them that they don't get up to any mischief with the hostel boys and helping them prepare the focus for their upcoming exams.
During my most recent visit to Pali, I found a different cloth market than the one I usually go to. There is a mill in Pali where this cloth is manufactured. The market had almost everything I was after though it was a bigger set up and not the same ambiance I find at the Kardi market where my host insists I sit to drink a few cups of chai with him and check the back store room for forgotten treasures! I noticed while in Pali that every single smoke stack had the seemingly obligatory forked metal staff/trident of Shiva sticking out the top. This is known locally as 'Trishul'.
Back in school, everyone is busily preparing for their exams. The Earthkeepers project
is well underway in the lower primary and the college. We intend to extend this into the middle and upper primary years soon. Feedback on environmental awareness and our use of local village-spun cloth for bags instead of plastic has been purely positive. We have also had the absolute pleasure of the company of Mahamandaleshwar Jasraj Puriji the past few days and the students are not wasting a moment to catch a few minutes of His time.
The planning process for rainwater harvesting in our school has begun. It means that daydreams I had to see projects unfolding are no longer dreams and they are manifesting with the compounding interest of practical life skills. In the resource department, support has also filtered down to us in the form of pencils, pens ad notebooks which are more than gratefully received. It costs an average of $70 Euros to put one of our students through a school year, including uniforms, transport and books.
We have a nursery open on Canadian Yashodaji's veranda. Pigeons on a chair. Generally, Dad takes the 'sitting on eggs' day shift and Mum takes the night shift. To give them some extra support, Lauraji added Swamiji's
photo to transform the chair. While waiting for the eggs to hatch, we've witnessed a successful adoption. Another nest with one baby previously in the steel pile of OM Ashram, had to be relocated due to the inconvenience it was causing to workers wanting greater access to their materials.
It is a well known fact that birds do not like having their nests relocated. Despite this wisdom, an attempt was made to relocate the nest nearby. After careful observation, we realised the parents were not keen to ever visit their nest again. Canadian Yashodaji worked her magic, collected the young fluffy chick, wrapped it in a cozy, old cement bag and carried it safely to the foster home while continuously chanting a Mantra of calm... Praying to Guruji and Mahaprabhuji for the overall success of the adoption intention. Lauraji supplied the gloves and the distraction for adding the baby to the nest. Parent pigeon returned and sat down this time on two eggs and one chick without battering an eyelid to the new addition.
The girls post chick-transplant Satsung was this: "If you come home and there's a nine year old child there calling you Mum, would you
think....well, he's in my house and calling me Mum, why not"?!
Other busy wildlife here include the ever working bees and wasps, often making their homes on our verandas. Small frogs are again active in the kitchen area, hiding under some holes in the concrete where they can burrow into the dirt. They appreciate the extra watering that area of the grass receives at this time of year.
Ultimate Frisbe has been the flavour of the post dinner game choices. While my sore thumb has been getting in the way, it has been a lot of fun and quite an energetic game to engage us with.
Swamiji inspirations: One interest - the well being of humans - when we are in harmony then the entire nature will be in harmony, We are eating for living and not living for eating, Our eyes are given to see the beauty, The key for success is self-discipline, Renounce, Practice Awareness, Time will not wait... Awaken the positive qualities through Satsung: positive thinking, good company, great friends, nature walking, inspiring books, the value in 'helping hands'........
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