Vrindavan day trip w/the satsang

Vrindavan, India

Today was Vrindavan day. Mellow morning hang at the Gusainji casa, then noon time a bunch of us took two cars down into full Loi Bazar lila. I was happy to ride down and enjoy some car time with David Premdas Haberman, a Pushti scholar and colleague of Shyamdas—just a sweetheart of a guy, as well as one of the few Westerners who can hold the Pushti candle burning brightly. He was off to meet with his Indian academic advisor, as he is living at Shyamdas’ place during a year of academic research on Pushti Marg culture and devotional practices. His plan was to live with Shyam all year while doing this work—so obviously this year has been a different program for him as it has been for all of us.

Anyway, the Jivamuktoids—Padma ji, Jules, Anja and Alexandra—in one car, and Premdas, KD’s sister Satrupa, Majer and Shari and myself in the other, all blasted down to the main Bazar and did our various shopping rounds, me buying a cheapo phone and taking care of business while the rest mostly shopped for clothes and whatnot. I tagged along with Jules as he had a singing lesson with Bittu ji, one of the young stars of the local music world, and we both had a fun time with that—so great to learn and open my brain. I could study the rest of my days and still be lucky to have a half-full cup. But it’s all good.


Towards sunset, we went over for evening darshan at Radha Raman temple, then walked around past Chandi’s place at Keshi ghat and ambled through the stone warrens and riverside passageways up river back to the car. I’d told Shari and Majer—here on their first trip to Vrindavan—about that awesome riverside passage, and they both were suitably mind-blown, as I knew they’d be. So magical over there…

DSC02768  DSC02767




Back to Jatipura for last prasad—most of the group is heading back to the states tomorrow, or onwards in India, and with all who left earlier today, we were all happy for a final round of hang time. After dinner we hung and chanted, me playing the traditional two-headed pakhawaj drum (for the first time ever—how fun!) while Jules and Vraja Gopi sang, then I warmed everyone up for bedtime with a few chants from Shyam Lila.


I’m looking forward to a quiet breather here, but I am beginning to wonder where I go from here. Jaipur? Goa? Stay here? As long as I’m back in Delhi by the 23rd, latest…