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Saturday, March 23rd, 2024

Toronto/ Montreal/ Dubai

My first stop on today's plane journey was in Montreal. I heard my name over the loudspeaker. It was only for verifying my ID.

My legal name is John Vis but since Montreal is mostly a francophone city, naturally they would address me as John Vi since in French, many last letters, including consonants, get dropped.

So Mister John Vi AKA Bhatimarga Swami, got up with passport to verify. I simply raised the incident because the person at the desk was particularly friendly. Of all the folks I interacted with today he stood out as a shining star, especially over the language adjustment in my name. He was so kind.

But there was one other person, who over the long draggy plane ride also, got my attention. It was time for the meal and my usual Jain meal order didn't come through. Out of innocence the flight attendant asked I wanted the chicken or the other animal option. I was a slight bit disappointed about not having a veg meal offered to me. So I said to her, " I haven't eaten animals in years. My travel agent gets me a veg meal. There's some mistake here.

She was sweet about it. "I'll see if there's anything I can get you in the business class."

"Thank you!" Eventually some nice paratha and okra come my way. It was fine. The woman attendant was apologetic.

Dubai Airport interior.

I really relished reading the book, "Kirtan Standards by Srila Prabhupada" authored by one of our stalwart monks, Jayadwaita Swami. It made the day less leary. I have been conducting seminars on these Kirtan guidelines on occasion and will be doing one called, "Conscious Kirtan" in West Virginia the first weekend of May.

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