Vaiyasaki das: On our way back driving through the Himalayas, we passed an apiary with beehives, and, knowing that Prabhupada was in Vrindavan, we thought, “Wow, wouldn’t that be great to get Prabhupada some real Himalayan honey?”
We got a big bottle. Jagadish was Prabhupada’s secretary at that time, and he knew Satyanarayan and me, so he arranged for Prabhupada to see us.
We went into Prabhupada’s room when Prabhupada was sitting with Gopal Krishna and speaking to an Indian gentleman. When we came in he turned around and said, “Here are two very nice boys.”
We sat down, and Jagadish introduced us. Satyanarayan explained that we were in the Library Party and had been preaching in Kashmir.
Prabhupada was very pleased that we were distributing his books. When he heard we were in Kashmir, he opened his eyes really wide and said,
“Ah, Kashmir. I went to Kashmir. Do you remember when you come over the crest of the hill and you see the Kashmir valley?” We said, “Yes, Prabhupada, we saw it.”
He said, “Yes, I distributed my books there.” Then I said,
“Srila Prabhupada, I met that gentleman. He bought your first three volumes from you, and now he has taken the whole set, a standing order.”
Srila Prabhupada was reminiscing about that and spoke about the importance of preaching.
After five or ten minutes, just before we left, he looked me right in the eye and said, “So, wherever you go and whoever you meet, just tell them about Krishna, and in that way, by Lord Chaitanya’s order, become a guru.”
That left a big impression on me, because he was looking right at me. When I left I thought, “Wow, if I don’t tell people about Krishna, I’m in total maya. This is my mission.”
We gave Prabhupada the bottle of honey, which he graciously accepted. Later Palika, who was Prabhupada’s cook, told us that every morning Prabhupada had a little bit of that honey with his breakfast.
It was wonderful to travel with Srila Prabhupada in an airplane. The first time Srila Prabhupada went to Australia to bring the Deities there, Vegavan prabhu was with him, carrying one of the Deities.
They brought their lunch with them, and after the plane took off they unpacked it, Srila Prabhupada served it, and everyone took prasadam.
When they had finished, Prabhupada rinsed his mouth and washed his hands. Then he started cleaning his front teeth with a toothpick.
Vegavan thought, “Oh, you have to clean your mouth after you eat,” and he pulled out a toothbrush and toothpaste from his bag.
Prabhupada said, “What you are doing?” Vegavan said, “I’m going to brush my teeth, Srila Prabhupada.”
Prabhupada said, “That you do before you take prasad. After prasad, you use a toothpick, because the little pieces in your mouth are also prasadam.”
Ever since then, I’ve always picked my teeth with a toothpick after prasadam.
Gargamuni told Srila Prabhupada that two men on the Library Party were distributing Prabhupada’s books to the universities in Indonesia, a Muslim country.
At that time, other devotees, like Padmapani and Tribhuvanath, were also in Muslim countries.
Prabhupada was pleased that devotees were going to preach in the Muslim countries, and he told Gargamuni, “I put on my head the dust from the feet of whoever preaches in the Muslim countries.”
When we heard that, we were in ecstasy. That was wonderful. After Indonesia, we went on to the libraries in Java and then Bali.
It was in Bali that I found out that Prabhupada had left the planet.
That morning I was ready to go to a college for distribution, when I thought I would call our secretary, Aravindaksi devi in Jakarta, to find out how things were going and if books were being sent out and so on.
She said, “Have you heard the news?” I said, “No, what?” She said, “You didn’t know?” I said, “I didn’t know.”
She said, “I just heard from the devotees in Singapore that Prabhupada left the planet.” I was shocked. I hung up the phone.
I didn’t know what to do, but I thought Prabhupada would want me to go and preach in this college, so I drove there. It was at the other end of Bali.
I arrived at the college, met the librarian, and got two standing orders. As I came out, I met the Minister of Culture in Jakarta, who we had met about a month earlier trying to distribute the books to the library in the Cultural Ministry.
He said to me, “Have you heard about your Guru Maharaj?” I said, “Yes, I did. Thank you.”
I was amazed that even in a little town in Bali, everybody knew that Prabhupada had left the planet.
After that I met Satyanarayan, who hadn’t heard. I had to break the news to him. Immediately he broke down and sobbed uncontrollably, crying and crying.
I realized that I was stonehearted. I hadn’t broken down and sobbed. I was sad, and tears came to my eyes, but I saw that Satyanarayan had so much love for Prabhupada, and I respected him for that.
I felt, “If only I could have such a relationship with Prabhupada; if only I could have felt that.”
Excerpt from “Memories-Anecdotes of a Modern-Day Saint” 
by Siddhanta das 


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