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11

 

Him. Baba got up and touched His own feet in a big picture that adorned the Center. Just then, an old-timer, pointing to the photo Baba had touched, said, "He is a thief." There was a pause and we all did not know where to look. He then continued, "He robs our hearts." Everyone heaved a sigh of relief and Baba too smiled.

 

Baba was back at Meher Cottage by 6:30 and a small crowd was already collecting there. Baba was to leave by the 7:30 train for Bajuwa*. We were to accompany Baba. The mandali were busy packing their kit. Some women came for darshan and sang a few bhajans. The Desai family was in tears at the thought of Baba leaving them. When would they see Baba again? They were not permitted to accompany Baba to Bajuwa. On the contrary, they were asked to lock their doors and stay in the cottage the whole day. At 7 a.m., it was time to go to the station. The Desai family, with hearts full of love and their throats choked, asked Baba when He would come back. Dr. Nilu and the aged sister of Sorabji Desai were standing nearby. The flame of life had already begun to flicker in her. Baba gestured, "When Nilu walks like her." Dr. Nilu never lived to that age. In fact, he died the same year in the car accident at Satara where Baba suffered so much. The aged sister died exactly eight days after Baba's visit to Navsari.

 

All of us went to the station. The train had not yet come. Baba paced about on the platform, at times bending and throwing a small pebble hither and thither in His usual way. He then came and sat on a chair in a waiting room. One Parsee brought Baba a cup of tea from the tea stall on the station. Baba did not want to drink it and shook His head. The Parsee insisted that it was good tea! Baba dipped His finger in the tea and sucked it. He then asked the Parsee to drink the rest of it. The tea was gulped down in a jiffy.

 

The train soon came and Baba with the mandali and all of us got into a third class compartment. Third class travel in India by no means rocks you to sleep. On the contrary, it threatens to jolt you into eternity. The Desai family tried to inch their way near the window where Baba sat. The parting tore our hearts. Amongst loud cheers of "Avatar Meher Baba Ki Jai," the train began to move. Baba stood at the door of the compartment waving His hand with a smiling face to all those on the platform. His compassionate heart comforted His lovers who were left behind, for He felt the sadness that had filled each heart at the time of' departure of the train. No words could convey anything more than the tears. The Desai family had only one wish in their hearts: "While we live we cannot be separated from you, but grant us the boon that even after death we should not be parted!"

 

This was Beloved Baba's last visit to Navsari and His last journey by train. The happy memories of the 29th of January 1956 can never be effaced from the horizon of our minds.

 

 

Baba Pearls

 

 

*"Bajuwa" is spelled "Bajwa" in Lordmeher.org-Webmaster-JK

 

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