About 200 people had gathered there, waiting in various states of patience or impatience, excitement, boredom and distraction, as updates arrived of the constantly changing arrival times.
My best friend Pearly and I decided that the best place to be was standing behind some Tibetans, because we were taller than them so could see over their heads, and His Holiness was surely going to say hello to the Tibetans. While we were waiting, I remembered to try to purify my ordinary view and prepare myself to meet a holy being. I said some mantras, visualising His holiness coming off the plane manifesting as 1,000 armed Chenrezig, with each arm able to grasp the hands of all the many people waiting at the airport, so that no-one missed out.
When His Holiness did arrive and began to make his way down the line, Eddie appeared from his quiet contemplations and the three of us waited patiently amongst the good-natured and very subdued pushing and shoving of expectant ‘fans'. When His Holiness reached the Tibetans in front of us he asked them a few questions and was about to go on when he noticed my hair. He reached out his hand, gently stroked my very orange and very nylon hair extensions and asked "Oh, What is this made of then?" I managed to mumble that hopefully one day it could be made of Vajra Yogini hair.
A very subtle but blissfully cooling feeling slowly spread down my head and through my body. For a couple of hours after I felt clear and walked straight and it began to dawn on me what the phrase to ‘subdue the mind' actually feels like. But it was only on the way home that the true extent and depth of this meeting began to dawn on us.
Although our heads had been only inches apart, we discovered that Pearly (a singer songwriter) actually heard His Holiness say "Oh, what's this rock-star?" Eddie, our meditation teacher and librarian heard him ask "Oh, so what does this mean?" And myself, a costume maker, heard him ask what it was!
This was surely the speech of a holy being manifesting. They say that the Buddha was able to simultaneously teach in all languages, so that everyone could hear exactly what they needed and would be of most benefit to them. There is no way to tell what his holiness really said, except that he really cares so much that he can reach out and spontaneously touch what is most precious and fundamental to our life.