For the entire month of January I stayed in Simhachalam, keeping myself busy with programs and seminars over zoom - one after another. It was almost a bit of a marathon! I started to develop a taste for them and managed to create a somewhat personal atmosphere, by connecting privately with some of the participants at the end of each session. It was nice to be able to reach people from all corners of the world - just by sitting in my room in Simhachalam!
It was the first time for many years that I had an opportunity to spend Xmas with my mother. Since I have been in Germany for the last months, I didn't have a good reason not to. In Germany, Xmas is traditionally a family festival, and I didn't have the heart to leave her to herself - in her advanced age....
On my return to Simhachalam/Germany on the 19th of November I decided to stay for one month, associate with the wonderful devotees of this dynamic community, give online programs and continue working on my book.
After having spent three and half weeks at my mother's home in a village outside of Tuebingen I could hardly wait to return to the association of devotees. In Simhachalam everyone had recovered from the Corona virus, and it was safe for me to return. I decided to make a little detour and visit the devotees in the small community of Leipzig for the main Kartik festivals of Govardhana Puja and Srila Prabhupada's disappearance. It had been four years ago that I visited the devotees here last, and meanwhile the preaching center had moved to a bigger place.
In the second half of October I went to see my mother - she had fallen over in the bathroom at night and had hit her forehead against a radiator, which created a wound that had to be stitched up. So I felt I should give her some association and care.
On the 15th of October - a few days after returning to Simhachalam - I took a 7-hour train ride to the temple in Bad Oeynhausen to offer another Holy Name Retreat over three days. Even though the Corona restrictions had become tighter, a crowd of around 50 devotees assembled, most of them being of Russian descent. Some devotees had come a long distance and had accepted the austerity of a 9-hour car drive to participate. What a sign of determination and sincerity in deepening their relationship with the holy name...!
Shortly after returning from Vienna/Austria to Simhachalam/Germany at the end of September, I went on another trip to Czech Republic. We had scheduled a Holy Name Retreat over a long weekend on the farm outside of Prague. Despite the Corona infection rate increasing from day to day, it was rather well attended by around 35 devotees who are part of the farm community. Devotees from other parts of the country did not have the courage to come and attend.
The first two weeks of September I stayed in Simhachalam/Germany and continued working on my next book. Since I anticipated another Corona wave coming up in autumn, I decided to go once again traveling while the weather was nice - to use the time before life could become more restricted again.
After celebrating Radhastami in Tallinn/Estonia, I returned to Simhachalam - just in time for a grandiose two-day wedding celebration! Ananda Krishna Prabhu, who had been a brahmachari for 17 years, had decided to change ashramas and marry Tunga Bhadra Mataji. He is well known and appreciated through his popular youtube channel throughout Germany and Austria, and thus many devotees had gathered to celebrate the event.
After Janmastami I had a direct flight from Copenhagen/Denmark to Tallinn/Estonia with Air Baltic - the first flight I had dared to book after the Corona crisis had started. And four days before the scheduled journey the flight was canceled due to lack of passengers. I re-booked with Finnair via Helsinki, which fortunately operated. The flight from Helsinki to Tallinn had only six passengers! We were requested to take our seats in the very back - to balance out the luggage, which was in the compartment towards the front of the plane....
Devaki Devi Dasi's Traveling Diary
Devaki Devi Dasi is sharing her realizations and adventures in her Traveling Diary. Welcome to relish this nectar!