It was Tony’s birthday and the girls and trainees burst 38 balloons outside our door at 7.30 a.m. He got such a fright. It was our custom to open presents on our bed first thing in the morning. It was also our custom to wrap up silly things like old onions, carrots, socks or even an old shoe for the birthday person. The fun part was trying to get them to guess what the gift was. He left in a taxi and headed for Delhi that afternoon. He was going to Johannesburg to record his “Off the Edge” CD with J.B. Arthur.
It was a real faith trip. He left with a few hundred rupees and knew that somehow God was going to provide for the album. When he got to the studio, Joe told him it was a gift and he didn’t need to pay for it. Victo Masondo, Nick Carter and Lloyd Martin all said the same thing. They were professional musician friends who wanted to bless Tony. He was so relieved and happy.
While he was away, it seemed that all hell broke lose. Well, not quite, but every day was challenging. Jordan woke up with amoebic dysentery the next day and he was on the toilet every 15 minutes. Once when he was sitting on the pot he looked at me with watery eyes and said, “I’m a sick boy, mummy.” He didn’t act sick. He was full of energy. I also got a tummy bug and Ash started throwing up.
Our house was busy and so were things in the community. The Woodstock students came back from their term break. It had been quiet without them.
From my journal: 3.8.1997
Woodstockers back: Kirti, Sharon, Grace, Chuki-Om, Dechin, Alia (new) Joshua John (seems to be in a good place), John Hudson, Sabina Tyle and quite a few new faces.
Demanding day. Jordan’s appetite returned with a vengeance. Cried and cried because he was hungry. All got in the jeep to go down to Barlowganj to get medicine and bread. Jeep wouldn’t start. Guys pushed it out of the drive and up the hill. Felt so sorry for them. Gave it a run down but ended up in neighbour’s drive. Battery still dead as a doornail. Thank goodness for Bhaktu. Asha and Zoë are so noisy and out of hand. Put them to bed early and we had a chat about obedience. They are always more difficult when Tony is away.
There were a few issues with the trainees. We had a week of one of them manifesting and threatening to die. We kept praying for him but there were no changes. He told us an angel had come to him to tell him to say goodbye to his children and his wife. He called them around his bed. His hands were ice cold. Bhaktu took him to the doctor. There was nothing physically wrong with him. We told him we wouldn’t put up with it any longer. If he carried on we would send him home. He snapped out of it and was absolutely fine. He must have needed some personal attention.
The brother and sister trainees decided they weren’t learning anything and they left. They had been stirring things up quite a bit and we were planning to call them in to ask them to leave. Fortunately they made the first move. The next day, we heard from friends that the brother had worked with them. When he got upset, he had threatened to blow up their office. Nice.
Our house was full of children. There were families visiting every day that week and because our house was perfect for kid’s parties, we had two. I arranged everything on the roof and let them go nuts.
Zoë got tonsillitis and Asha, Jordan and I all got really bad colds. We were up all hours of the night and there was no stopping during the day. I was exhausted. Bhaktu and Hiram were so helpful. They were always willing to help with the kids.
It was difficult to run the house as well as see to the trainees and their programme. They were all young believers and didn’t always behave themselves. One day I was called downstairs. Sanjay and Bhaktu were having a full on fight. They were so worked up with each other. After a chat, there were tears and apologies.
I couldn’t wait for Tony to get home. He had a great time with his recording and it was a successful trip, but we all missed him. He was like our generator. Life just wasn’t the same without Tony.