November 28, 2014

I am not back in India as I usually am this time of year, due to some of the life changes mentioned in this post, but still wanted to share some of the beautiful Natural blessings which fill my life. Namaste

Not In India

The blessings of renewal, rebirth and rejuvenation in cyclical change

fall leaves city street.jpg.jpeg

A colorful, exquisite, collective reminder of the impermanence of all things, of the necessity of never-ending change in the life of all living things…a gentle and loving reminder of the cycle of life and the exquisite beauty of, and Natural need for endings, which make rebirth and renewal possible. The inevitability of change which cannot be fought, which must be accepted as the blessing it is.


The leaves are a reminder of the precious blessings in each moment. Each with its own story and individual and unique beauty as it reaches the end of its cycle, making way for new and continued Natural beauty and creation.




I have been away for some time now, also due to cyclical life changes, which we must accept without fighting them…we cannot control these life changes and upheavals, and resisting them can only lead…

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Beautiful Last Evening (and day) in India – Nov 21-22 2012

December 1, 2012

Beautiful Last Evening (and day) in India – Nov 21-22 2012

Last Morning in Rishikesh-Clouds Over the Mountains

Last Morning in Rishikesh-Clouds Over the Mountains

I was invited to Dr. Arora and Manju’s for dinner together with my friend Michal.  I usually spend quite a lot of time visiting with Manju while I am in Rishikesh.  Daytime visits where we just chat and I watch her in the kitchen-best cooking lessons available-and these visits were missing during this short stay.  But at least I would get to spend the evening with her, and I was excited about going.

We wound up spending the evening in prayers, chanting and singing with all the female members of the communal family dwelling (5 sisters-in-law, a couple of THEIR daughters-in-law, a visiting sister of Dr. Arora from Delhi, and even one baby granddaughter).  I couldn’t have found a more suitable, uplifting and beautiful way to spend my last evening in Rishikesh, or better company.  I have no photos, as it seemed neither appropriate nor necessary at the time, but the wonderful pictures will remain in my mind for a very long time.

It seems over 30 years ago, Dr. Arora’s father decided that every Tuesday there should be an evening of Kirtan (sacred chanting) in the family temple situated in the center of the family dwelling, and the women at the time decided they would be the ones to do it.  And to this day, this is precisely what happens every Tuesday evening.

There is nothing that compares with the power, and empowering energies of the prayers of women.  The chanting was done joyfully, sometimes playfully, sometimes with deep serious mindfulness and devotion, but always directed directly towards the deities.  I felt it on a deep soul level and felt myself being swept away with the power of the connection to God felt in the small room.  Since the chanting is repetitive, and the women took turns leading it, I was very often able to join in. And from my years in India, several of the chants I realized I actually knew the words to myself!  This surprised me and of course brought great joy and approving pleasure to the faces  of the women. And of course, clapping along with everyone else was a no brainer, even for me!!  🙂

The visit afterwards with Manju and the Doctor was thoroughly enjoyable as always, with good conversation, seeing the beautiful wedding album from their eldest son’s wedding last year (the daughter in law of course now living there with them) and of course a superb light dinner.  With soup, idlis, subji, shahi paneer (Manju makes the best in India for sure and she always remembers how much I like it and makes it for me when I come), chutney and of course chapattis with ghee . Dr Arora drove us home, quite late…tired but with full stomachs and happy hearts.

Now having my last breakfast here at the Pundir Restaurant after being treated to a wonderful whole wheat chapatti and homemade ghee when I stopped by Seema’s house earlier.


The sky is cloudy today for the first time in 6 weeks.  I feel “cloudy” myself. Must be raining somewhere up in the mountains to bring the clouds and colder weather today.

Neelkanth Temple in Distance

Neelkanth Temple in Distance


And somewhere deep inside of me there is a “rainy” feeling as well.

evening clouds

evening clouds

The day continued quietly, with goodbyes to everyone, always difficult, but even more so after such a short stay, and of course packing up my stuff for storage as well as for taking home.  The sky was beautiful to watch during the day and evening,




and before heading off to Delhi by taxi, I had my last supper of schnitzel and chips!!  🙂


The ride on the new highway took less than 5 hours….

Sachin provided me with a pillow so I could sleep in the car on the way.  I dozed on and off…and to my great surprise was in delhi in less than 5 hours!!  New road is good for sure.
Found a nice bench in the departure lounge to lay down on for another hour until they opened the RJ check in counter.  They really hassled me about my carry on- it didn’t fit into the “rack” which measures them.  Finally they called the supervisor, and she allowed me to take it.  What a pain in the ass.  The whole thing took over an hour but luckily I was first on line and when I got to the gate, there was even a free bed to lie down on which I did of course.



Last Sunrise Over Delhi During Take Off

Last Sunrise Over Delhi During Take Off

the flight was fine but it seems the AC as not working….it was really hot on the plane.
Good flight to amman but it is over 7 hours going back.  The plane was not full so there was no one next to me which made it easier to  sleep a little with my legs over the handle of the next seat.
1/2 hour delay in Amman but that meant yosi actually got the airport in time to pick me up.  It was nice.
We went and had a nice breakfast in Yehud and then headed home and got stuck in a HAIL STORM!!  Thought the car windows would crack the pieces were so big!
And then later on in the evening, my house was struck directly by lightning and my phone went dead while talking to yosi.  and my cellphone needed to be charged but I had no electricity, so we couldn’t talk.  It was easier talking to him from India!

And now I am home, a week later, writing this last post!!  I will be posting several more photo posts, and then saying goodbye until next year!  Look forward to seeing you all once again then!

Namaste from Herzlia, Israel

February 28, 2011 – Day After Panchakarma, Final Checkup, “What Do I Want to Eat First??” – and a Really Weird “Coincidence”

February 28, 2011

February 28, 2011 – Day After Panchakarma, Final Checkup, “What Do I Want to Eat First??” – and a Really Weird “Coincidence”

Ram Jhula from the distance on a busy sunny morning

The weather has shifted and I am finally wearing my summer suits! I am now sitting at Flavour’s restaurant having just ordered my first breakfast after panchakarma:  Aloo Parantha and Masala Chai! (I was not disappointed when the food was served to me J)))))

I sit at an open window, a lovely breeze on my face, looking out at the sunlight dancing on the Ganga below. Tears of joy and gratitude flowing.  I have a very short time left and will be “being” completely in every moment.

Before coming down for breakfast, I went into Dr. Arora for my final checkup.  My pulse was excellent, as was the balance of my doshas.  My “emotional” pulse was very high, but there is good reason for that.  Otherwise, there was a definite improvement in my condition from when I began…and the full benefits are usually felt only 2-3 weeks later anyway.  And during this entire panchakarma, I did not loose any weight – which is a first for me.  Lovely!

After finishing my breakfast, began getting together my final parcel home at my favorite ayurveda chemist shop in Ram Jhula, and then took a rickshaw back up to Tapovan.  Stocked up on a few things I needed in my room, walked home, chatted with some friends on the way up and then found my way up to my warm, sunny rooftop.  I spent most of the day up here, enjoying the sun and warmth, doing needlepoint, reading, and relaxing.  Eventually went down for lunch, which in the end was pasta with vegetable sauce (very similar to steamed veggies and chapatti, no?), and it was again, not disappointing.  I’ve just finished drinking a glass of hot spiced milk with my chawanprash ( tonic taken after panchakarma to continue the rejuvenation process and restore energy levels) together with a cinnamon roll.  It is 5 PM and I am still outside in my short sleeve cotton suit, barefoot, and quite comfortable!!  Life is indeed wonderful.

I have been approached by a couple of people to teach them Reiki, I could really use the money, but have a definite feeling that I should NOT be doing anything over the next couple of weeks but enjoying myself and my freedom before coming home.

Tomorrow I hope to take care of a couple of more errands I have, the next day go into the market and develop some photos for people here and visit Papu Lassi for the best lassi in India, and that will leave me plenty of time for just “being” until I leave for Delhi and home.

The place is swarming with tourist, especially young Israelis, and VERY noisy.  I had become so accustomed to the quiet here, I have having difficulty adjusting.  But just a week ago, there were just three occupied rooms here, and now there are NO free rooms and this guesthouse alone has about 25 rooms.  All the other guesthouses in the area here are also at full capacity.  Motorbikes galore, noise until the wee hours of the morning, thank goodness for my ear plugs.  For the local people, it is a big boon after the last couple of really difficult, cold months and I am happy for them.  But for me it is strange seeing so many people all of sudden.  Like being forced out of a quiet, almost silent retreat without proper preparation.

I was also lucky to do my panchakarma when I did, where I was almost always the only person there and got full and generous attention.  Now the place is “jumpin’” and I am also happy for them, but glad I am not doing my treatments now.

A couple of days ago I pulled a Tarot card for myself:  “easy does it” – “There is no need to hurry or force things to happen.  Everything is occurring in perfect timing!”  This has certainly been true until now, and trust it will continue to be true as I return home to my “other” reality.

A REALLY funny thing happened today as well.  About 6 weeks ago, someone back home asked me to help him put together a parcel of Ayurvedic remedies for him from my chemist here.  I preferred not getting involved for certain reasons and wrote back to him, telling him it would be better if he did it directly with the chemist, rather than me as a middle man…I gave him the chemist’s e-mail and forgot about the whole thing.

Today, when I went into the chemist to prepare my OWN parcel to ship home, what did I see laying on his counter?  A neatly labeled parcel ready to be shipped to…you guessed it…that same person who had asked me to it for him 6 weeks ago!  So even though I wanted nothing to do with it, the whole issue still wound up as part of my life, perhaps on a less intrusive level, but no less jolting and intense in its impact on me.  When the chemist saw me looking at the parcel, he asked “are you ok?”.  When I told him I know this person, he was astounded…what are the chances???

And now, I will continue to enjoy the lovely outdoors, as the sky has completely clouded over and have a feeling there will not be the same brilliant sunshiny day tomorrow as there was for past couple of days.  At least however, it is no longer cold.



January 10, 2009 – Winter Hibernation and Cooking – and – My First Regular Reiki client in India!

January 10, 2009

January 10, 2009 – Winter Hibernation and Cooking – and – My First Regular Reiki client in India!

Just got my first regular Reiki client here in India! She is a local lady from Rishikesh with personal issues which she hopes will be helped by Tarot reading, regular Reiki treatments, home”work” etc. She may even decide to do a workshop. She will be coming every Tuesday 1t 11. I’m very thrilled with this.

Write about cooking procedure and post pictures… just resting…feeling sluggish…doing things very slowly….winter time really is a time for hibernation and I am following my body’s wisdom. Perhaps that is why people get sick in the winter more often? In the “real” world we have to follow the clock and cannot allow a change in habit as the seasons change. But if change is the norm in nature, why would it not be the norm for human beings as well? We are part of nature. I seem to sleep more, move more slowly, absorb the sun in the morning hours and then only around 12 or so begin to think about going out or “doing” something…But it seems to work well as my evening is longer and more productive…including taking a nice hot shower before going to sleep rather than in the morning when it is much colder.

I’ve ever really described the process of cooking in my “non-kitchen” so will do so very quickly and attach a couple of pictures. Since I have no real kitchen, no work counter, no sink, etc., and I squat on the floor Indian style to actually cook over the balloon of gas and also to wash my dishes in the bucket of water…my cooking of necessity remains very simple. Kitcheri, veg soup, pasta with cheese sauce and porridge…and the occasional egg. And all the preparations for cooking are done outside on the terrace at the little table I sit at to read, work on the computer, eat and chop vegetables etc. It is very pleasant doing this outdoors, sitting down, taking my time, and having everything chopped and measured, including spices. Liquids etc., before going into the room and actually doing the cooking. It is relaxing, peaceful, mindful, and of course I have the beautiful sunsets and sunrises to accompany the preparations. Attached are a couple of photos to give you a slight idea, but without feeling the warmth of the sun, or hearing the music playing in the background, etc., some of the effect is missing.

Veggies Fresh for Chopping

Veggies Fresh for Chopping

Sunset to Chop By

Sunset to Chop By

Veggies for Soup

Veggies for Soup


Dec. 29, 2008 – Finding My “Nick’s” in Rishikesh…Inspirational Waters and a Poem

December 30, 2008

Dec. 29, 2008 – Finding My “Nick’s” in Rishikesh…Inspirational Waters and a Poem

Those of you who have been following my travels since 2001, know that I very often sat at a restaurant in McLeod, Dharamsala called Nick’s. Not only because they have the best cakes in India, but for the view of “my mountain” from their rooftop terrace. There are numerous pictures of this mountain in different seasons, including snow capped, and whenever I needed serenity in my day, I would come sit facing this mountain.

The Mountain as Seen From Nick's

The Mountain as Seen From Nick's

Well, the Café Del Mar (finally remembered to check the name) here in Rishikesh, the one I told you about with the fabulous view over the Ganga, that I have already taken some pictures of and will be taking more (if I remember to bring my camera!), has become my “nick’s” here in Rishikesh.

I woke this morning with a strange feeling…had just some fruit for breakfast and planned to go down to this restaurant for a more substantial breakfast, but I had company this morning (I’ve become the local Rishikesh guide office for newcomers) and by the time I was finished with them, got myself dressed and out, it was close to 12. I was feeling really down, with a nagging headache Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 14, 2008 – backtracking…..The Walk to the Waterfall

December 29, 2008

Dec. 14, 2008 – backtracking…..The Walk to the Waterfall


Today is actually December 29th and it would seem that it would be difficult to recount this day from almost two weeks ago, but it is so etched in my mind, I could write about it in two months time as well, with no trouble.


This Japanese fellow had asked me several times to go with him “up to the mountains”. (only later did I find out that he not only spends a good part of his life trekking all over the world, he also made a documentary film which was sold to Discovery Channel, among others. There are very few places in the world he hasn’t been, always traveling when possible with non-motorized transportation. Walking, bicycle, kyack, dog sleds, reindeer sleds, etc. He has an amazing life story and if I had known all this about him beforehand, I doubt I would have agreed to go with him on this walk. It would have been too intimidating. He is also a trekking guide, and this is one of the reasons the waterfall trek was so enjoyable with him, although I didn’t realize that until later on). So, he continued to look for me on a day when I wasn’t working, and that was difficult to catch, but he finally did, and we agreed to go to the waterfall the next morning. I was a little nervous but he seemed pleased with the idea.

Second Waterfall

Second Waterfall

He came to get me at 10 in the morning, and although he was wearing only a thin cotton shirt and trousers and sandals, I was wearing a couple of layers of clothing including a sweatshirt with hood, warm jeans and walking shoes. I was also carrying a shawl in case I got cold! I asked if he thought I needed all these clothes and he told me to take whatever I felt comfortable with and he would carry it later on if necessary. It was really cold that morning, so I wore it all. I was happy when we first left as even with the clothes on, the wind was very strong and I was not warm at all. He himself was shivering and when I asked if he wanted my shawl, he said no, since shivering is the body’s natural way of warming up and soon he would be fine. Which he was! Not more than 15 minutes into the walk, (there is a full gallery of beautiful pictures at the end of this post. It is just taking too long to post them one by one in the appropriate places…sorry Read the rest of this entry »

Dec 22-24 – Good Evenings and Surprising Insights and Events

December 24, 2008

Dec 22-24 – Good Evenings and Surprising Revelations

Evening…dec. 22

Just before I got ready to go out this afternoon, when the sun had come out for a short while (there was a distinct winter nip in the air for the first time), a lady came to my room wanting to make an appointment for a Reiki treatment and Tarot reading for herself and her friend. I agreed to meet her at 6 but told her that her friend would have to come the next day. And then I set off to check out a jewelry shop I had never been at when I saw some very original pieces a girl here bought yesterday. Well, this shop was amazing. The women there makes everything herself, and everything is made from high quality gemstones…some pieces are very expensive, but most are reasonable for even me.

So, once again, I bought jewelry, and even put a couple of more pieces aside and will go get them in a couple of days.

This evening I had a lovely Reiki session and Tarot reading, and once again, when I mentioned my price, the lady insisted on giving me more money than I asked for. All very nice. Her friend is coming tomorrow evening as well.

And just as I finished eating the lovely cheese pasta I had made, two people came to reserve a workshop beginning tomorrow for the next two days.

Which all goes to prove, that ANYTHING I want for myself I can have and there will always be enough money to pay for it!! And more….

More tomorrow…continue reading…lots more in this post Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 8, 2008…And Interesting Story to Tell and A Taste of My Beautiful Sunrises

December 9, 2008

Dec. 8, 2008…And Interesting Story to Tell and A Taste of My Beautiful Sunrises

When I went down today to get the remaining items I needed for the parcel I was sending off, one of the shops I went into was one that sells Ayurveda health care products and cosmetics. I’ve been there very often over the last 2 years and the salesman knows me. But this time there was another gentleman there…I don’t use the term lightly. A very respectable looking Indian man, dressed in suit and tie, reminding me very much of Dr. Arora when he gets dressed up…it was obvious that he was someone important.

I made my purchases, and as I was getting ready to leave, the gentleman asked the salesman something and I felt they were talking about me and I recognized enough words to know that he was asking if it was possible for him to do something regarding me. And the salesman said it was ok. I turned around and before I realized what had happened, he had bent down, touch my feet and then his forehead…a sign of deep respect in India usually used with young people toward older family members, or highly respected individuals. Thanks to watching Indian soap operas for about a year, I was aware of the significance of this gesture. It happened to me once before in Delhi when one of the workers did this to me also. At the time I was too stunned to say anything or ask anything.

But this time I looked at the gentleman, a little embarrassed, and ask him why he did that. At first he thought I wanted an explanation of the gesture and began to explain, but I told him I know it is a sign of deep respect, but wondered why he did it to me!? He said because I am a respected new customer, but I said I’ve been shopping there for 2 years…and the salesman confirmed that fact. (I now assume he is the doctor who owns the place). So then he looked at me for a second, trying to determine I guess if he could tell me the real reason, and then he did. He said sometimes we are told to do things by God, and when this happens, we don’t ask questions, we just do it. He said God told him to show me the greatest sign of respect he could and so he did! I was quite surprised. I told him I also never question messages I get from God – but still was not quite sure what it all meant. He said he could sense special loving energies around me, and understood that God was confirming this and telling him I deserve great respect. Nice.

I mentioned that I sit out each morning to eat my breakfast as the sun is rising over the mountains. I hope this series of pictures give you some idea as to the glory and grace I feel each morning. And to FEEL the sun warming my face is just wonderful after the chill of the early morning! After about 20 minutes, I can no longer sit facing the sun, and then begin warming my back as well. What a wonderful way to begin each day!


Dec. 7-8, 2008 – The Blessings of Mindfulness Rediscovered

December 9, 2008

Dec. 7-8, 2008 – The Blessings of Mindfulness Rediscovered

Yesterday I had a lovely day beginning with day one of a 3 day Reiki Workshop with two young Israelis. Again, a first for me as it is the first time I’ve taught a workshop to such young people. They are aged 21 and 22 but seem very open to new ideas. The morning was lovely and I was impressed with their intensity and willingness to open up to new ideas. Completely enjoyed myself. Then I had lunch and finished just in time for a full Reiki treatment for Ted, who will begin his workshop on Thursday with me.

When he was finished, and thoroughly pleased with the results (he has had Reiki often in the States so is not new to this type of healing), he asked how much the session was. I said I charge 300 rupees and he said: “What?!?! – that can’t be”. Now I thought this was a very reasonable price so was surprised by his reaction. In the end, he was surprised it was so little and insisted on my taking 500 rupees!! Nice!

Had a pleasant evening…including some coffee and apple cake in my room while watching the rest of “My Fair Lady” which I thoroughly enjoyed. Einat came up for awhile, not feeling well, and by 10 I was ready for bed. Read a little and slept beautifully until this morning, when I woke, had a nice breakfast of fresh fruit and toast with Tahini and honey. Got ready for day two of the workshop when all of a sudden Ilanit appeared at my door telling me that Oren was suffereing terrible pain again (They are the kids in the workshop, but he is also the guy who has the kidney stone problem). Seems the Reiki and the meds Dr. Arora gave him are working, but that means the stones are moving out and that I guess is very painful. So we cancelled the class today and I took advantage of my “day off” to take care of an errand which has been annoying me for weeks as I never seemed time to do it.

I needed to send off a parcel with the sandals I bought in Delhi as well as some cosmetics requested from Israel. I dreaded doing it but in the end it turned out to be simple, quick and straightforward. Couldn’t get one thing I wanted to include, but that will go in the next parcel.

I then found myself sitting and relaxing in Little Buddha restaurant and once again enjoying the energies of the place.

I have been feeling extremely mindful the last couple of days. Whatever I do seems to have new aliveness for me. The sunrise, the birds, the breeze, the swaying trees, the monkeys, the cows, the jeeps and motorbikes. The swish of clothes as women walk past, the call of the hawker’s as they try to sell their wares. The smell of incense and garbage, masala chai and home made pasta sauce. The written words in the books I am reading. The taste of food whether it is chai or fresh black grapes. The music I listen too, even the water I drink or the caressing hot shower in the morning. Everything seems to have potency. And my feelings of gratitude for this feeling of new, heightened awareness leading to higher levels of joy are extremely deep and powerful. I try to live this way every day of my life, and teach the practice to as many people as I can, but it seems to come naturally the last while, almost effortlessly, which is how it SHOULD be.

A true blessing.

And just to complete the above…I just prepared a wonderful meal, and, just like a couple of days ago when I described my joy in preparing vegetables for soup while sitting outdoors, today I also enjoyed each moment of the preparation. From chopping the onions, grating the garlic and tomatoes, adding spices to the mixture in the bowl, measuring out the pasta, grating the cheese to add. Using my new frying pan for the first time, listening to the sound of the garlic and onions sautéing , and the tomatoes adding their fragrance and liquid to the mixture. Patiently waiting for it to be ready so I could use the one gas burner to prepare the pasta. Water boiling, pasta cooking, and then draining it in the colander. Even washing the dishes and pots…all done mindfully and joyfully. Finally adding the cheese, ghee and sauce to the cooked pasta, blessing and Reikiing it, and then: WOW! This is the best pasta I’ve eaten in months…certainly since coming to India. I DO love my own cooking, but this dish was exceptionally delicious. I can still taste the flavors and textures.

What a true joy!


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