during the Centenary celebration, to get the plaque put up announcing that the Avatar of the Age was born there, on February 25, 1894. The plaque was put up on the 9th of December, 1968, by the authorities, and a little celebration was held then. He introduced us to Sister Rechibai who had been very cooperative in getting this done; because in Ahmednagar years ago, Baba used to come to her house and she cooked for Him, and held Him in the highest esteem.
She it was who guided us to the room "No. 14" where the Deliverer was delivered! A picture of Baba with a garland of 7 lights hung in 'His' room. To those of us accustomed to western hospitals, Sassoon seemed an antique, to say the least, but a nurse friend told me it was the best in Poona.
Babajan's Tomb: Again! A welcome chance to pay respect to the 'Initiator' of young Merwan Sheriar Irani. An old fellow inside pressed on me, a tiny packet of ashes . . .
Thence to 765 Dastur Meher Road, the small house where Baba's two brothers still live (the third brother, Adi, Jr., lives in London). We saw the covered well, which gave good water to hundreds of families during the floods of '61 when the water mains became defunct for weeks — and we visited the room Eruch had spoken of. . .really no bigger than a big closet. As in 1962, this room held for me more of Baba's 'power' than any other spot. It was a privilege to bow before that raised 'stone' on which God-man had banged his God-weary head!
But one could not linger; others pressed behind. Outside, the garden was crowded, many were taking this opportunity to visit Jal's room and get some new Baba lockets. It was very sultry. Crowds of children followed us to our buses, it was already dark. 'Home' to the Poona Club, singing 'Baba Bhagavan,' Hank's Arti, and all the other Baba 'leit-motifs'.
This was the night Adi came to dinner. He came up on the terrace first. I did not tape his first words to me, but they were a moving description of how, for the last five years, Baba had kept him at a distance. He could see Baba only on 'business.' When Adi came to Meherazad, Baba would ask 'what has that fellow come for!' Adi used to go back to Ahmednagar, lock himself in his room and cry. But he was called one month before Baba dropped His body. Baba asked him, 'Do you believe I am God?' Adi answered 'Yes, of course.' On the 31st of January when Baba was gone he came and he found everyone silently weeping. Eruch was exhausted from giving Baba mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. One look at Mehera's face, Adi said, and he had to go outside and cry. Then he came back in and told them to pull themselves together. And they did. Adi said he then realized why Baba had kept him at a distance — so he became detached and strong, to face what had to be!
Adi sat at the head of our dinner table and began to talk; later, we moved into the lounge and settled around him. My tape recorder was a bit on the fritz, so I will encapsulate his speech, which lasted over two hours.
"In 1932 I went with Baba to England, then to Europe, Switzerland, where Baba sent me back to India for some work. Adi, Jr., accompanied Baba to America. In Switzerland we stayed at Lugano, lovely lakes, hotels. I stayed next to Baba's room, the other mandali were in another room. Baba's food and my food were served in His room. When Baba decided to take his food He asked me to sit down and take mine, but He never allowed me to finish. The moment I sat down to take it, on some pretext Baba would ask me to get up and bring something, water or soda water or Vichy water or whatever and I said 'All right. I got it.' 'Alright, alright!' Baba said. 'Sit down, take your food.' Again, I'm just putting a morsel in my mouth, and he said, 'I have finished taking my food, wash my hands!' So I get up and wash His hands. 'You sit down, take your food,' He says. Then as soon as I do, He says: 'Bring me a napkin to wipe my hands!' I get up and bring the napkin. 'Sit down and take your food!' I said, 'Yes, Baba, I am.' Then He says 'Bring me a tooth-pick.' I say 'Alright, Baba.' And after