1815NASIK & CANNES1937
Even though Nonny was on a liquid fast of 40 days by Baba's order, drinking only three glasses of orange juice per day, she accompanied them. Upon arriving, Baba asked her to relax in the shade while he and others played deck tennis and gilli-danda.
At around 10:30 Norina returned to the retreat and brought back a hot lunch of rice and spinach. Baba ate with the group off grass-leaf plates, serving the food himself. After lunch, they rested and played more games. Norina had also packed drinks and Baba made himself a refreshing concoction of barley water, soda water, orange and watermelon juice. He distributed slices of watermelon for dessert. In the afternoon the Westerners sat around Baba and amused him by telling funny stories.
After lunch Baba sent Freiny to bring Rustom, who had been ill with malaria. Rustom arrived and Baba asked him to lie in the shade and gave him barley water. Afterward, they left and reached the retreat by 3:30 in the afternoon.
Baba presented copies of the book The Perfect Master book to Norina, Nadine and Kitty. He also discussed Chanji and Malcolm's idea of having the Westerners write of their experiences to be collected into a book. He gave all one month to complete the assignment. By 5:30 P.M. Baba left Nasik for Rahuri and then went on to Meherabad.
In April, Nadine wrote of her experiences in a long letter to the Bengali poet, novelist and Nobel Laureate, Rabindranath Tagore, whom she had met in New York City many years before. An excerpt from her letter is as follows:
... We Russians always read and adored your poetic writings. India always seemed to us a country of highest spiritual manifestations and also of many alluring mysteries that fascinated our imagination and encouraged our hopes in seeking greater perfection; but it took years of search and ardent investigations before experience began to uncover to me the real meaning of true spirituality.
As so many Westerners, I went through certain yogi practice which I took wholeheartedly with the greatest inspiration of my life. But when I went as far as I could — I had to face insurmountable difficulties and had to stop, bewildered and helpless as there was no one who could assume the responsibilities of real guidance.