by Fred Winterfeldt
[Editor's Note: Fred gives only shorthand notes on Baba's talks. For the full accurate version, read "Three Incredible Weeks;" Vol. 2, No. 3 of The Awakener published by Sheriar Press.]
September 11th, 1954.
From Bombay we had an arduous trip through this part of India, where temples rise out of the open fields, which are often used as shelter for the homeless, or for bullocks or sheep or goats - religion in decay, lost in the jungle of human ignorance. We had several stops on the way, due to breakdown, refueling, or feeding of passengers. We had started out at Bombay at 8:30 a.m. and arrived at Ahmednagar 9:30 p.m. No pictures so far can illustrate the spiritual forces here - it is inborn, indestructible - just a natural environment. Sarosh Irani greeted us warmly; dinner and off to bed - guess where? - at Meherabad, where never before men were permitted. The moon is full and so are our hearts. Thoughts of love, for those who are left behind, wishing they could be with us and share what is ours to be - the momentous meeting tomorrow with our Divine Beloved BABA.
Sunday, September 12th.
5:30 a.m. rise and shine in time for a general breakfast. Met Will Backett, Purdom and all the others. Meditation - prepared to meet the ONE! A group of approximately 35,000 have assembled at Ahmednagar beneath a large sun shelter - throngs arrived by cart, bicycle or on foot. Baba arrived at 9:05 a.m. in a large blue car with curtained windows. I forgot myself, as I saw Him first - and I cried out joyfully: "BABA" - at the top of my voice. Serenely and powerfully He walked from His car toward the dais, greeted by the loudly cheering crowd: "AVATAR MEHER BABA Ki Jai!" The Mayor of Ahmednagar, a member of Parliament, a leader of the Congress Party, all made speeches and garlanded Baba. Baba washed the feet of 7 poor men and gave them an envelope containing money. He then paid homage to them, as He said, to the Godhood in them. He gave prasad of sugared peanuts to each one; the throng was thick, but Baba missed none. The Westerners were sitting in back of Baba. At a later time, He turned deliberately and looked straight and directly, with deep searching eyes at Alexander Markey and me. Tears ran down my cheeks joyfully, for this, His kindness. The women Mandali were sitting on my right, the close disciples were around us, on a raised platform. We couldn't see the crowd from here, because Baba's dais was directly in front of us . . . Him for whom we searched all these years!! While sitting absorbed in all these verbal declarations, given by all these advanced souls, who wished to have this conviction of love for Baba, I happened to think of Gustaji and I asked Dr. Donkin where he was. Dr. Donkin said. "turn around," so I did - and there was Gustaji, sitting all the time close to me. I embraced him, the "shadow" of Baba (as Baba calls him), wholeheartedly with love. He smiled warmly and shook hands with me. Baba had been giving prasad since 10 a.m., then lunchtime arrived and He sent us out for lunch. Baba kept on giving prasad all during the time from 12 noon to 2 p.m. when we returned and found Him still at it. I had to work my way through the crowd and was not more than 6 feet away from Baba, when a press reporter said to Baba: "Baba, you should rest now." Baba answered; "This is My rest," and He smiled. Quite often, while Baba was giving prasad, He would look up at me and twinkle His eye and smile. He also would look around to see if I was sitting there and again He would smile.
Tirelessly would He hand out prasad to all, like a flash would His hands move, back and forth, from an always-full basket which held sugar-coated peanuts. Someone timed this process of reaching and giving to take about 1½ seconds. Figure it out, how