Madhu Bazaz Wangu | Blog
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LITTLE GARONGA SAFARI CAMP

LITTLE GARONGA SAFARI CAMP, KRUGER, SOUTH AFRICA Our first stop in bushveld was Little Garonga Safari Lodge and dwelling for the four nights. Our luxurious thatched hut was about hundred meters away from the lounge/dining area but each time we left the hut a guard accompanied us as the animals roamed around freely. From the back-porch jungle was in full view. As the animals were most active at sunrise and sunset our morning safari was scheduled from 6:30 to 10:30 and evening safari from 3:30 to 7:00. Hours of driving over parched unpaved road we saw nothing but leafless tree branches, bushes and dry grass. The earth had recently awakening from the winter, so the animals and birds were visible from long distances. We saw a lioness carry three cubs, one at a...

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Traveling in Southern Africa

More than ever before, our recent trip in Southern Africa has made me realize how traveling makes us see instead of merely look. As I journey I do not take anything for granted. Even the routine such as eating, bathing, sleeping, talking get framed with attention. With each travel the new experiences stretch mind and open heart a bit more. As outer surroundings widen the world within also broadens. Traversing gives contour to the routine at home because you see them with new eyes. You don’t have to go to a distant land. You may choose to go to plains if you live in the mountains or visit small towns if you live in the big city. “Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before,” advises Dalai Lama. CAPE TOWN,...

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Our Heartfelt Condolences

I am saddened and shocked by the tragic shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill—the neighborhood I lived in for ten years and love. Everyone’s friend, Mr. Rogers lived and worshipped in this neighborhood.   To those who lost loved ones or friends, on behalf of the Mindful Writers Groups and Retreats, I extend my heartfelt condolences. To all others who have been either injured or impacted by this senseless act of violence, our thoughts are with you.   Mindful Writers celebrate diversity of religion and race and honor our common humanity. We truly believe in diversity, honoring our neighbors and seeing the other as our own self. Our gathering spaces are sanctuaries of creativity and comfort.   What is a writerly thing to do after hearing about such insane...

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Journaling in South Africa

My recent vacation in Southern Africa, with my husband, was one of the most mind stretching and heart opening trip we have ever had. Some thirty years ago, with the practice of mindfulness meditation I experienced my body, mind and heart integrate and become whole. In 2010, I invited writers of all levels to practice Writing Meditation with me. Recently, in Africa my integrated-self awoke to a deeper connection within because I was alive and attentive to the vivid web of natural world around me. The terms such as interconnectedness and impermanence of each moment and every life form was made real. The force that animates the universe and is felt in deep meditation became more meaningful. This tremendously powerful phenomenon gets lost in the hullabaloo of civilization. Our previous travels...

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Literary Awareness and an Elegant Festival of Books!

I attended an outstanding book festival on September 14 & 15 with some Mindful Writers. Thanks to Denise Weaver and Hilary Hauck for making us aware of the first Allegheny Regional Festival of Books at Bedford, Pennsylvania! http://alleghenyregionalfestivalofbooks.org/index.php/the-arfb-story/  What an elegant evening and the exquisitely planned affair! The opening night at the Omni Bedford Springs Resort was graced by the local author, Ellen Prentiss Campbell, the author of the novel The Bowl With Golden Seams. The following day about forty colorful and attractive author tables were set under four huge tents in front of the Courthouse. Readings by various authors were held at selected shops throughout the business district. My reading was at https://www.backstagealpaca.com.  Thanks to Diana Morris for hosting me! Looking forward to attending the next years festival at Somerset, Pennsylvania....

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To My Husband

Let me dive my face into your chest as someone thirsty plunges into a stream. In that infinite expanse I have sensed the potent scents of old spice and cigarettes. Let me breathe in your enthralling odor with sweetness of your kiss. Let me feel your touch and reminisce the memories of us growing old together. When I met you, I dreamt of an ideal life. Your presence inspired my visions of vast oceans, clouds carrying us to enchanting lands where skies are always blue, and spring is forever. In your eyes I glimpsed our lush life together with refreshing flowers and intoxicating wine. We delighted in our children, in their innocence and intelligence. In loving them, and in caressing you how I forget our weariness and worries! Only if you could know how much I love you. How empty...

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A High Tea Book Event

High Tea at this year's Spring TeaSE Book Event was a lovely affair. Organized by Lillie Leonardi and Joyce Wilk, and hosted by Janet Rae Tyree and the staff of Springdale Free Public Library,  we had a gala time. I was accompanied by Kathleen Shoop, J.D. Wylde, Dana Faletti and Ellen Roth. Each author's presentation was unique, audience was absorbed, tables were artfully decorated and, to top it all, a tasty four course luncheon was served. Thank you to the organizers and hosts!     [caption id="attachment_41916" align="aligncenter" width="375"] SPRING TEAse[/caption]...

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Tea, Scones and Books

Come, have a cup of hot tea, relax and listen to five authors talk about their books, life, and answer any questions you may have! See you in April! [caption id="attachment_41916" align="aligncenter" width="375"] SPRING TEAse[/caption]   ...

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Mindful Writers Spring Retreat

Want to save a magnificent writing time for yourself? Attend Mindful Writers 9th Spring Retreat! Don't miss this incomparable opportunity!   You will be transported to a magical place, your heart will open to spaciousness of nature, your writing will flow freely, and you will have loving and understanding companionship of some very talented and productive novice and professional writers.   Come join us from March 26-30! [caption id="attachment_41913" align="aligncenter" width="465"] Mindful Writers Spring Retreat[/caption] ...

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Mindful Writers Winter Retreat

You're invited to the Mindful Writers Winter Wonderland Retreat! Join us: Thursday February 8, 2018 (12:30 welcome lunch) through Sunday February 11, 2018 (11:30 goodbye lunch) $450 for private room in toasty warm lodge, private bathroom, all meals included and: Sitting Meditation: Body, Awakening the Senses, Sensitizing Sensations (3 Sessions) Mindful Walking (3 Sessions) Mindful Writing Sessions (Approximately 33 Hours) Peace, productivity, joy, laughter, rest, friendship (Approximately 72 Hours) Ligonier Camp and Conference Center 188 Macartney Lane, Ligonier, PA 15658 (just outside of Pittsburgh, PA, easy trip on the turnpike from either direction) Contact Kathleen at Kathleenshoop@gmail.com or Larry Schardt at Larryschardt@gmail.com with any questions. Also, join us on our mindful writers retreat facebook page to stay up-to-date on mindful events and inspiration. https://www.facebook.com/groups/MindfulWritersRetreat/...

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