Saturday, March 7, 2009

How we named the goats: An retrospective interlude

We named Monique's goats.

But the reason for the names went back several years in my personal history, so I will take a moment to catch up.

When John became a professor at MIT, we moved from San Diego to Lexington MA and lived in a rented house for two years. During this time we wanted to buy a house but never could save the 20% immutable down payment. And we didn't know how we'd ever be able to.

Then one of John's colleagues, who lived 15 miles south of us in Wellesley, got a job in Maryland and needed to sell his house, but he was having no luck. Seeing this, I offered that we would rent it for a year in lieu of the down payment, and he agreed! So that is how we moved to Wellesley. This was 3 months after Fritz was born.

We joined a church, I began to sing in the choir, and we met a few people. VJ went to nursery school. Our new life was beginning.

A year later we met the Fergusons at a church camp. John had had to go out of town at the last minute, so I took the three children, who were then 5, 3, and 1, alone. The first morning after we arrived, it was all I could do to get them up and dressed in the tent and make it to the dining room for breakfast. I was really tired from trying to settle them the night before, sleep on the hard ground, adjust to the noises of others around us...

As I dragged my cold and tired offspring to the dining room, Kay Ferguson, who was 51 at the time, and her husband Gene, were bounding up the steep hill from the waterfront with great energy. They looked half my age. I grumpily asked what they were doing down there so early in the morning, and Kay chirped, "We were meditating!"

After groaning inwardly, I asked, what's that, and she told me to talk to her son Bob - he could tell me.

It was one of those turning points that doesn't announce itself in a big way, just slips in and changes everything.

Bob was not available to talk, but Kay invited me to a TM lecture in her living room a few weeks later. In it they explained that through Transcendental Meditation (as taught by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi), a person could get a rest that was twice as deep as during the deepest stage of sleep. And that in so doing, deep stresses could be relieved. And that with the relief of deep stress, behavior and attitude became more positive...

These three points were music to my ears. If anyone ever needed more rest, less stress, and more positive behavior and attitude, it was I. So I nervously started TM. And I liked it.

The next week, Kay invited me to come over to another meeting and hear about Shaklee. Which I did. And that was life-changing, too, but that's a different story.

A year and a half after starting TM, I went to teacher training, then began to run the Wellesley TM center with Bob Ferguson. I had purpose, and I was happy. I meditated twice a day, and began to see results. I went to TM courses and meditated more so I could make rapid progress: I was really intent on improving myself. And I learned a lot about the basis of TM, which included Vedic literature in Sanskrit.

And that's where the names of Monique's kids came from, and also the name of our farm.

We named them Mataji (Little Mother) and Rani (Princess). Rani is pronounced 'Ronny'. So Mataji and Rani. They were our first babies.

And their names went well with the name of our little enterprise, which was Anandalila Farm. 'Anandalila' means 'the display of joy'. And that's certainly all about goat kids: they bound around and display joy. And we expected we would as a family, too.


Martie said...

The other header I made you says Anandalila Farm on it.

Eloise said...

I love that you taught us how to pronounce the easy one!

I see I inherited the need to give exotic names to my pets :)

Real said...

You probably won't believe this but at about the exact time you were posting this, we were out at dinner with friends and my husband was explaining to them the name of your farm and where it had come from. Funny.