Amma's coming home.
Thursday morning, when going for breakfast, there were devotees and ashramites sitting before Amma's place at 8.30 AM. It was said that Amma would come around 10.00 AM from her journey to Europe and the USA. So we thought that a little bit crazy. But then, back in our flat, the idea came that we could do our names until Amma arrives, as this takes about 1 hour. So that's what we did. We got 2 chairs and installed them in the 2nd row directly in the entrance to the small hall leading to the stairs. After 1/2 hour the sun started to come out above the trees in the yard and it was getting really hot. But nevertheless we kept going and felt good sitting there and waiting for Amma to come. At 10.00 AM we had finished the names and more and more people started to come and install chairs around. A lot of children sat near the stairs, played or painted books or other games. Slowly at 10.30 a line got formed in the yard, reaching out to the big hall. At 11.00 a lot of people had gathered there and we enjoyed having a chair so near Amma's place, because that was now impossible to get anymore. But Amma kept us waiting. Sampurna and Arjun showed up and greeted us. Apparently Amma would come from Trivandrum Airport. Now there was a big crowd who had gathered all around and people started to get excited and nervous. Some tried to sneek the place of others or just stood in front of them and one could feel the the stress growing. The sun had turned to the other side and we were back into the shade after 2 hours! A lady asked Vandana if she was OK because her face had become red as usual under these circumstances. Now people started staying up, we also did, the chairs were removed and people started pressing from behind to get closer. A lot of police forces showed up, brahmacharinis gave instructions to keep the path free. I knew this would collapse totally as soon as Amma would show up. And that is what happened. It was past 12.15 and one could see the first signs that Amma was coming. Finally the big van arrived. They drove the van in front of the place, so all the people there had to move - and nobody wanted to do that! When finally Amma came out under the protection of 4 policemen, there was no place left even to put a dime. And under the enthousiastic shouts from the devotees Amma proceded towards the house, but we almost couldn't see her because she is so small. And the pressure started to be almost unbearable by all the people around. When she walked up the stairs to her room, some Indian people shouted short phrases or made remarks which made Amma laugh. She said also some funny things, but all in Malayalam, so we couldn't understand. Before the turn she started sending kisses and hands to us all with sweet smiles and a sunny expression of love and joy. Finally she disappeared to her room where she would come traditionally to the window to greet us all again. That made the mass of people all move to the frontyard. And because the big van was still there and nobody wanted to move and the people under the stairs and the balcony moved back, imagine the pressure and the stress happening. I tried to protect Vandana as much as I could but was also moved by the crowd backwards and to the side. Some small women allmost got crashed and started screaming. The girl from the recycling center told me: „Just move with the crowd, don't fight it!“ But somehow I did both. Finally things started to calm down and then Amma appeared on the window, sending kisses and greetings to us all. She looked around to everybody the same way she does at the end of a Devi-Bhava. We all felt blessed and happy to be there. This was the first time ever that we participated in this kind of ritual. 3 people took a lot of photos behind Amma. Maybe one day we will see some of them. After some time and some phrases from Amma and shouts from Indians Amma retired and the crowd slowly desintegrated. By then it was almost 1.00 PM. We returned to our room.
Amma had come back home!