The Heart of the Matter
November 07, 2012
Into Africa, Part 1

Mauritius 1.jpeg

Heart of the Matter's guest blogger, Louise Roenn, has just arrived in Mauritius. She will be blogging about the Words of Peace Global (WOPG) events, with Prem Rawat, in Africa throughout November.

The moment the steam from the black vanilla tea meets my nostrils at 38,000 feet, my past, sweet memories of Mauritius come flooding back to me once again.

I haven't tasted this distinctly, local tea since 2008, the last time Prem Rawat visited Mauritius. And I forgot how breathtakingly beautiful the island was as it appears beneath me, rising out of the deep, blue Indian Ocean east of South Africa.

"Welcome to Paradise" a large colorful banner announces at the arrival hall.

"Four years is a long time," says Roopesh, driving me past swaying sugar cane fields and coconut palm trees to the house where I'll be staying. .

"And yet it feels like only yesterday," I respond, looking at the clear blue sky ahead.

Roopesh has greeted me, at the airport, every time I arrived in Mauritius for Words of Peace events in 2005, 2006, and 2008. He always looks the same, only with more glowing eyes as the years go by.

"Preparations have really kicked off now," Roopesh adds. "There's only eight days to go before the event. We have a volunteer briefing today at 2:00 pm."

We pull up to a large, two-story yellow house decorated with flowers. Roopesh's aunt, uncle, and two cousins live here, in Curepipe, and for the next nine days, so will I.

"I've been to all of Prem Rawat's events in Mauritius since his first visit in 1985," Aunt Rani says, pouring more vanilla tea into my cup.

On Sunday, November 11th, Rani, her family, and 3,500 other islanders will listen to Prem Rawat present his message of peace once again, in person.

"So what are your plans while you are here, Louise?" cousin Preeya asks.

"Other than drink tea with you, enjoy life, and the event? To capture some of the magic, via words and photos, and share it with people around the world," I explain.

Photo: Preeya, Roopesh and Aunt Rani outside their home in Curepipe, Mauritius, preparing for the upcoming Words of Peace event with Prem Rawat.

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at November 7, 2012 02:45 AM

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