Wednesday, March 03, 2010

March update

Things are very quiet at the moment with only two of us here today. Ratnadharini headed off this morning on her 3 month sabbatical, most of which she plans to spend in Scotland, whilst others are scattered about the country. Most of us will be joining forces again on the National Order weekend at Padmaloka. It's great using their lovely shrine room, and the added flourish of flowers in the urinals is always appreciated!

The lambs are gradually arriving in the surrounding fields, and we've been having to do a fair bit of sheep rescues recently, mainly as they get their heads stuck in the wire fence (Sridevi even endured a 'war wound' as her sheep rather excitedly sprung free, throwing her into a hedge and giving her a black eye), but also getting entangled in barbed wire and a tree root...that one ended up with quite a haircut in order to free her. On the last morning of the Going for Refuge retreat most of us meditated whilst half the team valiantly rounded up about 30 sheep who'd appeared in the garden! You learn lots of new skills here! One retreatant asked if you need to learn to gather sheep in order to be ordained...the answer is yes! OK, so it's not really, but it helps!

We've just had a woodburning stove fitted in the community lounge, which was bought with retreat dana collected over time. It should prevent so much heat vanishing up the chimney and keep us snug in the winter (well, often the summer in Wales too!). We had a slight hiccup earlier today as it set off the fire alarm, but as I write this all seems well. We really do appreciate the dana that you so often generously give us when you come on retreat. It helps keep this place in good condition for those of us living here, and whoever comes next...which will one day be some of you.