The last few days have been mellow and relaxing, spending time closer to home. On Monday, I enjoyed a pretty good local Ayurveda massage with the new experience of a steam bath at the end. It felt like you were being enclosed in an archaic casket with the super hot steam rising from below in vents. But it did feel good.
I also woke up one morning with immediate thoughts of the skinny momma dog downstairs and her two pups. I kept seeing pieces of bread in her little hutch that people had left but she obviously didn’t want to eat it. So I went out and finally found dog food that I have been feeding her for breakfast and dinner. She now recognizes me in the neighborhood and jumps all over me. I understand! I adore having a little dog while I’m in Varanasi. They sure could use all the love and nourishment they can get here. I have never seen so many dogs (and puppies) looking so malnourished, beat up and unloved.
I did meet Raj on Tues night for a little. I only had time to proof website copy for him and his brother because I had a meeting at 8pm. Considering our last time together, that was likely a good thing. I had finally gotten through to Prabhash, the musician from the family of 14 generations that Mark Whitwell (yoga teacher in CA had kindly connected me with). It took borrowing the landline/phone of a kind local store owner after a scavenger hunt for nail clippers and a veggie peeler to finally reach him. He had just gotten back from the burning ghats because his grandmother had passed. And yet, he still came to see me the next day and we spoke for a couple hours! He explained that death is more accepted in the Indian culture and it really was okay to meet with me then. I really enjoyed everything he had to share about his family and musical history. And then he made an appointment for me to meet with his brother today at 5p to talk about beginning my singing lessons.
Turned out we had a very serendipitous connection a few hours ahead of schedule. I was on my way home to get money for the bookstore, when a young Indian man asked if I was Rivka when I approached my guest house. He stopped over around 2pm on his way from school, three hours before we were supposed to meet — good thing I just happened to be arriving! I realize now that’s how India seems to work. Or at least has been working for me, thankfully — divine timing indeed!We briefly spoke and made plans for a lesson the very next day.