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  • In all the domestic hustle and bustle of getting ready for a trip overseas to my folks, everything that transpired between our neighbour Mr Dardani and us is now shrouded in mystery. But this I remember. Before he left, Old Bert said, You and H have a good life.
    Even at that time when I was preoccupied, that struck me as odd. Have a good life. Why, where was he going?
    Through the window I could see him going back and forth, from his house where he had lived for dozens of years with Mrs Dardani, raising their children, and then alone with Mini, to his car. He took longer than usual to load his station wagon.

    In the jumbo jet flying out of LAX (the codename of IATA - International Air Transport Association - for Los Angeles International Airport, X having no specific identifier), I sat, prepared for the next long flight ahead. A man sitting across the aisle handed me his pillow. I took it. Seeing I did not put it behind me, he said, I gave it for you to use.

    We got to talking. He was a paraphysician working in California. He had children. But he was divorced. Or was he divorcing? I forget.

    He was on his way to India. To Sai Baba.

    The hours flew by, as we conversed. Considering the fact that the plane was jetting its way across the Pacific Ocean, the hours were literally flying.

    I had met two devotees of Sai Baba in Sabah, seven years ago. They were kind and helpful. And thus I sat, enthralled by his spiritual quest.

    Then we disembarked. Out in the brightly lit airport hallway, out of the dim inside of the plane that had been so conducive to stories of sojourns motivated by inner leanings, we saw ourselves for who we were. Everyday people.

    We were awkward strangers again. He bade me adieu. Have a good life, he said.

    As he headed for his plane, for the next part of his journey, I was back with Old Bert again. Wasn't that what Mr Dardani had said, to have a good life?


    Photo of plane rising on the website a-urantian-artist-shares, "Mind is your ship..."
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