Andy, Emily, and Andrew came with me today, and we heard a folk group play flute, drum, hammer dulcimar, cymbols, a two string bowed intrument, and a guitarlike instrument carved from one piece of wood with a skin stretched over the cuplike body. We saw a Buddha being painted on a scroll, and a sand mandala being created.
In the El Rio part of the Folklife Festval saw adobe structures being built and saw how cattle are herded into a special metal pen and medicated and branded.
In the evening, Andy and I went to a donor reception with catered appetizers, soft drinks, and deserts. They were setting up thousands of tall clear plastic cups with sand in the bottom and a small flat candle. When it got dark, they were lit and we and people at Tibet American day ringed the whole main Tibetan area, the stupa, out to the gate, and part of the El Rio area. It started with people taking one candle, then two three or four, then coming back for more, and finally some people carrying boxes of them. Very pretty.
Back to the Mall at 8:30 am with Andy to a specially build stage and the reserved seating area. Metal detectors and bag searches, blue towels handed out to sit on, monks in a formal debate, and people getting more towels to put on their heads. At 9:00 am the Dalai Lama arrived to preside over a ceremony of chanting and prayer, then speak at 11:00 am. There were monks sitting in front and many other well dressed Tibetans in our section. The man next to me following along with some of the chants. The boy in front of me playing and being nursed. A crow flying across behind his holiness, then back.
In the afternoon we went to a pool where Andy and the kids and I played keep away and I did some laps, weaving among people or when the kids and lifeguards were resting. Later we played croquet and I took the family out for Afgan food, chicken kebobs on huge pitas, and veggie combos with sweet pumpkin, spinach with yorgurt, and eggplant. Good food but the place was empty. We drove around and looked at the new houses near where they used to live.
Janet had to work, but the rest of us when to the marina, got out Andy's laser, and he took us each sailing. I sat on the dock and watched a heron and the kids from the first day of the sailing club and the instructor on the other dock yelling. When I went out, we saw on osprey fly away and what must have been a young one stay in the nest on the piling. They had dredged a new channel closer to shore, which made things confusing. After lunch, Andy had no takers, so he went out by himself for a while. I watched a cat leaving the dock ram another one and hole it, helped a clueless power boat tie up at the sailing dock, and was amused by the people trying to get their boat off its trailer.
The 7:30 pm flight left the gate early then sat in the rain until 8:15. It still made Boston by 9:30. Was able to listen on the headphones to the crew talking to the tower while we waited, and later to the different traffic controlers. After we took off there was a sun dog outside my window, a bright spot to the right of the setting sun as we flew level with the clouds, mostly yellow with a rainbow shimmer. There were only nine passengers. The drinks were brought out individually instead of bothering with the cart. Saw a few fireworks just before landing and ran into part the home bound crowd on the T.
I was planning to leave for Walden Pond at 7 this morning, but it looked like rain. Then the sun came out so I left at 8. I got there before 9. They weren't collecting for parking yet. There were a lot of early swimmers and only a couple other people. I swam most of the way across the wide end, and so far I can still breathe pretty well. The sun came out for a minute. I did my meditation.
I went early to get a ticket for the X-Men at Chestnut Hill and walked over to look at Hammond Pond for a few minutes. There were cattails and tall spikes of purple flowers along the shore. In a clear spot I could see mallards and a lot of Canada geese, and there were two swans out in the middle. Further along past some more cars there was a flock of sparrows make sorties from a tree and, out over the lily pads and lotus, a king bird hovering like a humming bird, and coming back to a twig arched over the water.