Saturday, January 31, 2009

Mysore, India or "Oh my God..Its Tracy and Ray"

Were here! Here in our beloved Mysore that is~
the weather is perfect and warm and it feels like I just left for a week and am back! It feels INCREDIBLE to be back! This is where I feel my absolute best. Hard to explain...people can't grasp it..some do though. My Indian friends here understand. It is just the way it is.....

Last night I was at Anus and tried to post a blog..I really did...but the conversation at our little table was flowing and it was just so Ironic what happened..
When we arrived at Anus, I asked her if she knew Laruga, as I have some things for her..and Anu told me that she knows of her, but that she didn't come there all that often..she told me where I could find her though...
So I logged on to FB and had a message from LG and I sent her one back...not knowing she was on her way to Anus..she had sensed that I was there! In she walked...and let me tell you..this girl is Beautiful! I knew she was from her pictures..but she is just that much and more in person and she radiates the most beautiful Light..my husband and I were just so happy to sit and visit with her and Finally meet! India is nice that way..here in Mysore, you come together with the most radiant of souls and its all So good!!

After dinner last night at Green Leaf..R and I had a Chai making lesson....and guess where R is right now??? Downstairs in the kitchen making us some CHAI!!!! It is so easy and we found out that we were using the wrong tea at home, and thats why it tasted so Yuck! But now we know the right way and OMG is it GOOD!

Speaking of OH MY GOD..well, its a long story and it is sort of between Ganesh Anu and a few other friends...but long story short..the sign above was VERY priceless upon arrival at the Mysore Train Station when Jeevan, our driver greeted us!! It made everything that we endured during the train trip up worth it ALL!

Yesterday I ran into my friend Sista Shree and T with Operation Shanti..they were driving past R and I..and we jumped into the car and we all drove out to Karuya Mane and were able to see the children! It was SO good to see them all again!! I was amazed at how much they had grown and changed in just 10 months time! They were all so happy to see us arrive and they all ran up with their little hands together and called one by one "Namaste" to us~ It was a precious moment. We went inside and saw the girls room, so wonderfully set up with all of their bunk beds and little bedding all made so nicely. Some of the little ones wanted to be held and I would pick them up and they would want to go over to the little poster with the English words and they would point to the word and I would say it..and Asha, a beauty of almost 15, showed me her books of incredible drawings that she did. SO talented!! She showed me her lesson book from school and her marks and how she has improved~
T was telling the kids that I was the woman who brought all the shoes last year, and they began remembering and some of the boys and girls came up and looked up at me and told me Thank You for the shoes....they were so grateful all over again.

Then, I thought I had made it through the visit without crying...man, I was so proud of myself..and then..I saw Rita.

Rita was the beautiful young woman who was on the street last year when I was here and she had contracted TB and we actually had to carry her to the hopital. She was unable to walk on her own..she was so sick that I was sure she would never leave the hospital alive. I had hopes for her, but I also saw how incredibly sick she was...
But there she stood! Right there in the room near the door as we were leaving and T told me that this was Rita...and I Lost It....I told Rita (even though I don't think she understood a word I spoke to her) that I was SO happy to see her all better and looking so beautiful and healthy. That I was just so glad she was all better..and then I grabbed her and gave her the tightest hug ever..she didn't know how to react..it isn't customary to hug here...but hey, I am a hugger and I hug when I need to!! She smiled so big and then as she smiled I cried, tears of the greatest Joy!

R (my husband) was so deeply touched by all the children..he said to me.."Now I understand why you needed to come back and bring the kids those art supplies" He was near tears himself, but somehow he can hold his back..I haven't learned how to do that yet. :0)
We will go and see the kids again later next week and deliver the art supplies to them then..I can't wait to see their eyes light up!

Every morning, I awaken to the cool breeze blowing in the windows of our adorable room..the sheer silken curtains blow so gently..and then you hear the call to prayer and then all of the various prayers and chants being performed outside in the homes and temples...the sweet smell of incense in the air and then little by little the birds begin their calls and then the rickshaws begin traveling down the street, various dogs will start their barking and I am awake in the place I have grown to love so much and I get this excitement in anticipation of another day here in India and I feel so incredliby blessed to be back.

Were going to have some Chai now...then some Yoga here in our room overlooking the street from our second floor balcony....then who knows what the day will bring..that is half of the fun of it all~


Thursday, January 29, 2009

Bangalore, India

Chai...you just don't get it like this at home.
Were staying at Nilgiris Nest, the place we always stay when we arrive in Bangalore..we have had plenty of rest and a great meal at our favorite place on Church Street..it's called "Queens" and the food is literally "to die for". I ate one meal yesterday..it was at Queens, need I say more?

It's very warm here, we knew it would be..so I am in shorts and a t-shirt and sandals. That's all you need..actually, that feels like too much clothing to be honest, but remember now, were in India...!!

Were taking a fast train to Mysore later this afternoon...my husband was just talking to a taxi driver about getting us to the station and I overheard my husband, and knew in his voice he needed my help..(you get this after being together for so long) and I jumped up from the computer and had to "take over" as the driver was telling him that the price was much more than it should be because we will be stopping in many shops to look..REALLY???? Um, I don't think so...this isn't our 1st trip here. If it was, that would be one thing, but I am savey to this now after coming so many times. Once he saw me and my reaction..it was all taken care of. "Yes Madam, we will go directly to station, no stopping"
Thank You very much~
Pictures to come..gotta go catch a train!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Good Morning Hong Kong!

the money is beautiful here! Look at the colors of it..I can't WAIT to spend it!!!
my sweet checking us in...

a little fruit and some tea...and I am good to go!

just like a Honeymoon after 20 years!!! Seriously!! xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Kowloon Bay, Hong Kong...

This is one of the best Airlines other than Singapore Air...they were awesome and there was hardly any turbulence...I could not believe it. Thank You Ganesh...you told me you were going to take care of that for me after last years trip back home...Nice!

We arrived at 6:30 pm, Chinese New Year celebrations were in FULL swing..and I do mean Full Swing! Fireworks like I have never seen before, Laser Light shows, people all out and about dressed in their finest..and Ray and I stumble off a 15 hour flight...having been up for almost 24 hours...so here is the Good Fortune Tree in the hotel lobby...more later, now that I am awake!!

The view from our 17th floor hotel room at about midnight last night...
The Metro Park Hotel is VERY nice if you are thinking about coming to Hong Kong. Very upscale and plush and they upgraded us to the Executive Floor Suite~~~ Ray has a nice smile ;0)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

i'm going already!!!!!

but first things first! Our customary visit to Gordon Biersch...A Must before leaving the country....
see the LOVE in my husbands eyes as he gazes into his very last Marzen for 6 whole weeks?!

and yes, I will proudly admit...I am a 2 fisted drinker..water AND a Marzen! Balance People..Balance. I am all about balance. (pictured here with our nice waiter Randy...who biked to SF from Seattle to work at this GB location for 6 months and then he will bike to New Orleans to work at that GB location!! Fun I tell ya, this guy is FUN, AND driven!) He has the right idea on how to burn that beer off as well ;0)

my last meal of choice was the Spinach Salad with Salmon..no bacon, no eggs...

and ray chose the Pecan "something or other" Cedar Plank Salmon with Jasmine Rice and veggies
really quite good!!

then we rode BART back to SFO and caught the shuttle back to the hotel for one more night in the states..we fly tomorrow to Hong Kong......and I will be sure to have an update from that amazing City!!!

Friday, January 23, 2009

the moment awaits~

well, I am VERY happy to say, that this is my last post until I reach Hong Kong!
Tonight's BIG event is packing for the 6 week trip and then tomorrow dropping off all of our various menagerie....( whom i am going to miss more than you could ever imagine) and my sweet son....
Then it's off to San Francisco for an overnight rendezvous ;0) and Hong Kong here we come.....
I will blog as often as time permits...or I have time for!!!
But as always this trip will be as exciting as the other 4 have been..India NEVER disappoints! It is a country Filled with Beautiful Color,Wonderful Scents, Happy Smiles, Delicious Food, Good Friends and and overwhelming amount of Spirituality and Love~hey, why else would I return again and again????
I have many people expecting me this year...and many wonderful plans await us....the excitement is building by the second, and with any luck at all..I just may sleep a bit tonight!!! All of those who know me, know that this is what I live for each year...my return to India....
my love for this beautiful country runs so deep it is hard to describe..but trust me on this one..I am VERY Happy in this moment~
OM Shanti, Shanti, Shanti

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Mumbai slum residents protest 'Slumdog Millionaire's' name
Thursday, January 22nd 2009, 7:58 AM

MUMBAI, India — Several dozen Mumbai slum residents protested the award-winning film "Slumdog Millionaire" on Thursday, calling the film's title insulting.
The protest came amid mounting excitement in India — where the movie is set and home to many of its actors — ahead of Academy Award nominations later Thursday.
The film, a rags-to-riches romance set in Mumbai's notorious slums, has been tapped a favorite for several Oscar nominations after it swept its four categories at the Golden Globes, including the prize for best drama.
But not all of Mumbai's slum residents were happy.
"I am poor, but don't call me slumdog," said Rekha Dhamji, 18, one of about two dozen slum residents who protested outside the home of one of the movie's actors, Anil Kapoor.
"I don't want to be referred to as a dog," she said.
Other protesters held up banners reading "Poverty For Sale," and "I am not a dog." One of them carried a puppy.
Nicholas Almeida, a social activist who organized the protest, said he planned to file a lawsuit on Friday to get the name changed.
The film, which tells the story of Jamal Malik, a poor youth who becomes the champion of India's "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" television program as he searches for his lost love, has also been criticized for focusing on India's poverty.
On Wednesday the cast and director spoke to the media in New Delhi about the film, and the controversy it has sparked.
"The film is going to be a terrific inspiration to kids around India. It's a feel-good film, a film of hope," said Kapoor, who grew up in a Mumbai slum.
He dismissed claims that the word "slumdog" was offensive. "Children from the slums are actually called much worse names."
Screenwriter Simon Beaufoy said people should not read too much into the word. "I just made up the word. I liked the idea. I didn't mean to offend anyone," he said.
Despite the protests, the film was also generating a lot of excitement in India ahead of the nominations and its official release in the country set for Friday.
The Times Now news channel broadcast a special program called "Oscars Here We Come" as part of wall-to-wall coverage of the Academy Awards buildup.
"We're all so happy, we're beaming just to see our people walk down the red carpet and get the recognition we should get," actress Amrita Arora told Times Now.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Love, Hope, Change

Just what I really needed before leaving the good ole' USA..this photo say's it ALL!
Love, Hope, Change...a New America..a New Day has Dawned...
May God Bless Us All!
and most of all The Obama Family~

Monday, January 19, 2009

Christy's class in Guatemala

my beloved former yoga teacher Christy Brown was teaching a Yin Yoga retreat in Guatemala recently and some of the photos were so breathtaking I thought you might want to see them~~

In the photo with the 4 women you may recongnize Nubia..next to Christy, Jai Uttals wife and my other former Yoga teacher!

OM Shanti~

Sunday, January 18, 2009

It seems like things are all in order around here. I am Ready! I know, there is some time left on the clock before we depart...

the hardest part is leaving my son and my animals behind.....but I carry them with me in my heart, always. I have the suitcase filled with the Art Supplies all packed. There are some gifts inside as well...

I am wondering about this warm weather were having here though..I swear it's been like summer here for the past week. I have been wearing all of my summer clothes and my little running skirts to the gym. Last year at this time we were all bundled up and there was snow on the ground.

Well, at least I am prepared for the weather in India at least!! I have been loving it all...gotta love it all! So, get ready for me Ma India...I am coming Home!


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Heathers beautiful gift for the children of Karunya Mane...

This painting was done by my soul friend Heather.

She painted it for the children of Karunya Mane in Mysore, India.

From her beautiful heart, for them.

The inscription on the back says simply..

To the children of Karunya Mane

"The Truth of who you are
Is as radiant as a star
As Innocent as LOVE itself".

All my love,Heather Foreman

and each time I read this, my eyes well up with tears....

Heather told me that it is from a Course in Miracles..and Jesus spoke those words.

No wonder I cry.

I love you my friend, so much more than words can ever say...so simple, yet so heart touching..soul touching...


Tuesday, January 13, 2009


i can't even believe that life can dish out so much sometimes...

how do we get through it, and keep our sanity?

i love my life..and i am truly Blessed...

but man....i need a break!

in 11 days, i will get a HUGE one!

and i can hardly wait!
Shanti Om~~~

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Seven years in Tibet

This post is especially for Flo~
Do you recognize him from the movie???

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

it's so reassuring to see Brad aging right along with me...he still has it though in my eyes. I will never forget the day I bumped into him at the coffee shop though (literally). Ah, the memories that we have in our lives!!


Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Jims Lucky Day....

Our dear friend got lucky a few days ago...
He retired after 30 years as Charles Shultz's right hand man for 30 years (you know Charlie Brown and Snoopy creator) he was given a surprise dinner party at a swanky nearby hotel, a brand new car, a nice amount of cash and a Rolex watch engraved "Happiness is working with Jim Doe for 30 years" the kids did their dad proud in honoring Jim...not bad for 30 years of service eh?
Then he was doing his daily loop down the hill from the estate he purchased last year...and Bam...he got hit while walking in the crosswalk. He called me this morning and told me that he feels so lucky to be alive..and that he was really glad he didn't see the car coming at him, as he would have tightened up and his injuries would have been much worse. He is sore, but he said "Jesus Tracy, the only injuries I have are a bit of road rash on my right elbow" . Amazing...below is the article from the paper..he still has his sense of humor..that he will Never lose!!

Jim Doe was two-thirds across a crosswalk on Bicentennial Way on Saturday when a car hit him, hard.
"All I knew was that there was a loud thud and the thud was me," said Doe, who retired a few years back after managing Charles Schulz's ice arena and gift shop for more than three decades.
Paramedics and sheriff's deputies who rushed to him there on the asphalt told him he'd flown more than 30 feet. That and two other things blew Doe's mind.
One was that he wasn't badly hurt, not a single bone was broken. The other was that so many people came to his aid, on the street and at the nearby Kaiser hospital, and he knew several of them.
"It's so good to see all those faces that you know," said a man grateful he's still alive and part of a caring community.
In the Kaiser emergency room, a CHP officer told him, "I used to work for you" at the ice rink. Doe asked her, "Did I fire you?"

Saturday, January 3, 2009