Playing With My Food ~
A journal about food, thought, travel, and life; by Chef & Raconteur Chaz French.

Absentia, Memoria, Florida Part Two

I kinda forgot I was supposed to post part two…

Absentia, Memoria, Florida Part Two: Memoria/Birthday

I’m going to start by saying very few people knew it was my birthday, and I kinda wanted it to stay that way, but word got out.  When you have the same birthday as the Guru you get overshadowed, and that’s okay. Add memorial service for the Guru, on the mutual birthday and I wasn’t expecting anyone to have anything else on their minds, but people went out of their way to make sure my birthday was noted with some happiness, and while I generally prefer not getting public attention, it made the day easier for me emotionally.  I was actually doing really well until I met up with Kristen (aka LA Laxsmi); we hugged and I lost it entirely.  A good decade of emotion came over me and I was a blubbering mess.

Then there was the memorial…

I could….

  •  talk about the 700-900 people who came from all over to be there
  •  type out the list of people who spoke
  •  try to convey some of what they said about Ma Jaya
  •  tell you it was beautiful and gorgeous and everything she would have wanted
  •  talk about how beautiful the kirtan wallas were, or the featured singers who sang so beautifully for their Ma.

I can never convey what it meant to actually be there with so many people I love, celebrating the life of a woman who changed every one of our lives and thousands of others.  So I’m not going to try.  It was beautiful and deeply moving and we all walked away in tears with a renewed commitment to carrying on her works.

At the end of the ceremony her ashes were poured into the pond, the Ganga.  Kashi Ashram’s place where our dead our placed and mourned and celebrated.  The next morning, many of us went swimming in that pond, life goes on….