I love driving alone during the 4 hour trip from Melbourne to Port Fairy.

Having experienced a happy childhood in a small country town in another part of Victoria, something in me relaxes and breathes deeply as I pass by the open fields, grand vistas and little pockets of shops.

Port Fairy has the added beauty of being situated alongside a river mouth flowing into a vast, energetic ocean. Whales from Antarctica pass by at certain times of the year and the wide streets and old style houses trigger happy memories and make me smile.

Akashamani and  Sanghamati steer a small sangha there with dedication and commitment. Both of these dear friends have to travel long distances to enjoy the company of the wider Order  and largely have to feed their own inspiration and progress. I have great admiration for pioneers who week after week set up the conditions for others to explore the Dharma. I know they both feel inspired by the enthusiasm and openness of the local community of practitioners.

I was very warmly welcomed and truly loved being on the women’s retreat held at a farmhouse on the edge of river. It was a harmonious and reflective retreat exploring the 5 Buddha mandala.

I drank up the birdsong, sunsets and company. Feeling so fortunate.

The next stop on my journey will be Adhistana UK.