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Wendy, United Kingdom

Dear Your Holiness

I am very grateful to you. I have seen you in person I think three times in my life. Once was in Cambridge many years ago, where we had seats in King's College Chapel, but so far back and behind a pillar and I realised we wouldn't be able to see you. But, when you arrived, you walked up the aisle past us and made eye contact and I will always remember that - it was so powerful. Not only did I see you, but you saw me - you really saw me, and you looked at me as if I was a very dear friend, it was so wonderful.

And I'm so grateful for your teachings and your profound compassion - and also your laughter, especially when you were with Desmund Tutu, which really made me laugh too, and I love laughing and being playful.

Lakshmi the Elephant

I have now moved to Wales to be nearer my son, who has become a monk at the Skanda Vale ashram and is looking after three elephants! I am so lucky I get to see them regularly. I'm sending you a picture of one of the elephants, called Lakshmi, who is now almost totally blind.

With warm wishes and much love,


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