Monday July 21

I sent off from Trollhatten at 8.30 am, flew to Stockholm, had a couple of hours stopover to take lunch with Yogindra and pick up Srila Prabhupada and my suitcase, then a flight to London, another 2 hrs. transit and another flight to Glasgow. I arrived at the temple at Leshmahagow at 10 PM so it was a whole day just traveling. Needless to say I was a bit wiped out. And a throat infection I picked up in WDC has come back, so I hope it doesn’t impair my speaking in the seminars.

July 22

Now I am settled in and begin my seminars this evening. Things here seem to be quite stable. They have had some major leadership changes in the past two years and just recently changed temple presidents but now things are going fine. Prabhupada Prana, the new TP is a gentle and serious devotee and the rest of the devotees are enthusiastically maintaining their book distribution activities. They have about 16 houses in the immediate vacinity, and the temple property stretches over three plots up a hillside. Its all nicely maintained and the community is solid. The unusual feature of this temple is that they have 12,000+ (yes, that’s thousands) of saligram-silas!

Its a pretty amazing sight to see the Lord in his multiple forms in one big stainless steel tank. The devotees don’t worship each shila individually of course, they have one or two that get bathed and decorated each day. The others are simply washed en masse so to speak. Then periodically there is a one week marathon when each and every shila is picked out, washed, cleaned and oiled before being returned to the tank. Now there are few less devotees in the temple this has become a bit of a strain for the pujaris (not surprisingly).

One bummer: I sent a letter to Kesihanta in Alachua with $620 worth of cheques in it to be banked in my account there. These were from book sales in Dallas and Houston. The letter hasn’t arrived, so it seems lost. And I have no record of who sent me the cheques. Now I have to try and find out who gave me the cheques and get them to re-issue them. I knew I should have insisted on cash…

We drove to Edinburgh in the late afternoon for a weekly program in a new age bookstore situated underneath the main Edinburgh Cathedral. We had a good turn out, about 20+ guests, some regulars and a few new ones, and I also sold a couple of books so everyone was pleased with the attendance.

July 23-27

My throat got worse as the week progressed. After the Edinburgh program it was really sore. So I ended skipping a couple of the morning sessions and just doing the evenings. I felt bad about it, its my standard to speak morning and evening at whatever temples I visit unless their program is different. I feel I should justify the help I get with my ticket by speaking as much as possible.

Wound up a pleasant visit to Karuna Bhavan with a Sunday feast talk and then a showing of the ppt. presentation on the Archives. It went over well. Everyone who sees it is surprised to see how much work has been done, and still needs to be done, to preserve and disseminate Srila Prabhupada’s legacy. Its one of the most important projects in ISKCON.

Karuna Bhavan has been noted in the past for their generosity in supporting various projects (they gave me $5,000 to help publish my first book in 1992) and Prabhupada Prana indicated that he would approach their temple council to see if they would like to give some financial support to the Archives so I am happy about that.

I also saw one nice gentleman, a retired Indian doctor Dr. Prem Pancham, who spontaneously offered some substantial financial support last year when I visited and he bought a full set of my books. He is an avid reader of Srila Prabhupada’s books and although we didn’t get to spend any time together this visit, he did kindly drive over an hour to get to one of the programs. May Krsna and Srila Prabhupada bless him with more and more realization and advancement in devotional service.

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