Sai Ram, I first heard about Sathya Sai Baba in 1982 when a very well known devotee showed some cine films at a venue my husband and I attended. I wasnt all that interested at the time.
Then once again the same devotee came and showed more films, still not that interested. In April of 1988 I decided on my way back from seeing my mother in England and travelling Air India that I would have a stop over for a week and go and see this Guru. Not many if any Western people went at that time of year as it is very hot.
I know now that it was a blessing to be called then so I was able to sit under the tree at Brindavan while Swami attended bhajans. So few people ,I would say maybe 500 hundred men and woman.I'd never been to a Sai Centre and didn't know the correct way of doing things, shoes and clothing etc, but I was soon shown by one of the Seva Dals.
I found it interesting to see Swami, but being on my own in India I was worried about eating anything in case I got sick, so I managed with just bananas and toast the whole time. Got home and said I wouldnt return to India, However 2 years later with my husnand we repeated the same thing, except that there were double the amount of people there then. Once again I said no more India for me. But if Swami wants you there it will happen.
Only six months later in November that year I went in a group to Puttaparthi for 2 weeks and have been every year since, After 2 days with that group we were called in for an interview. Other group members were holding out their swami medallions for him to bless which he did by touching them. When I held mine our he just looked at me and said I BLESS YOU, without touching it. I was upset at the time but have realised since what a blessing he gave me. I started taking groups myself after a while and still consider it a blessing to be used to do that service for people. Sometimes I went three times a year with people.
Had a lot of close contact with Swami, and many interviews. The most important is what he has taught me about myself, and that he is part of me and always will be.
Even though he has now left the body he is still there with us all in our hearts. Sai Ram Doris Loel Australia.