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Meera's Inspiration

After a long time I had the opportunity to volunteer with Meera a.k.a. Marriette.  After KK, I got to catch up with her, as she was telling me about her trip to India and volunteering.  Among her stories was one about tagging random people on the street with chai!  It inspired me to try this on my own.

I felt my birthday was the best time to try this.  What a great way to start the year, I thought.  The night before, one of my family friends (Leela Auntie and Anand Uncle) invited me over for a home-cooked meal.  They asked me my birthday plans and my story inspired Auntie, of whom is my mother's age, in which she asked if she could join.

The next day, early in the morning, both Auntie and I picked up coffee from Starbucks in four 12-person-travellers and proceeded to the Farmer's Market.  We served coffee to the vendors to help them kickstart their morning.  Their reactions and smiles to follow encouraged our efforts.  Transformations were flowing like rivers and right in front of us.  Halfway through, the Farmer's Market coordinator shutdown our operation in which Leela Auntie suggested that we serve the Davis Downtown instead.

Excited that Auntie immersed herself in this activity, we proceeded to do just that.  We received comments such as " Are you promoting Starbuck's", we replied, "No."  "What are you promoting then?", " We are not promoting anything, would like a cup of coffee?"; "How much are you selling the coffee for", asked that same person.  " We are not selling this coffee, we are giving it to those who want it."  This person and a few others could not believe in such a force and their facial expressions and body language-reactions made the day for us!  

We made sure to communicate to everyone that this is a gift of generosity rather than a free item to be made use of.  Leela Auntie really took to that definition.  At the end of the morning, she told me what I have heard and felt everytime at Karma Kitchen; her feet and body were aching but she her spirit felt rejuvenated.  I agreed with her and felt for the first time that we actually got to know each other better.

One of the best birthdays ever!  A special thanks to Meera and Leela Auntie for giving me that!

--MJ on Mar 6, 2011




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