Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A Ray of Hope

Referring to this post: -
http://buddha-and-me.blogspot.com/2010/02/my-trip-to-tibet-is-in-jeopardy.html

I had complaint and lamented that my trip to Tibet was as good as gone. And I really thought so until I found a local tour agency that has a planned trip to Tibet. However that trip itinery is not as good as the one planned by my US friend. I still think his trip was the best. The one planned by my friend included so many places, including Drikung Thil and Sera and Drepung monasteries. The one organised by my friend was for a much longer duration (something like 18 days). Whereas the tour by Reliance was only 8 days, not including initial day and departure day. However, in light of my budget constraints and my other commitments, and the difficulty of taking a longer leave, I had to settle for the second best, i.e. look for a cheaper tour from here.

The girl at Reliance didnot tell me the price quoted by her was subject to a tiered-pricing. For instance, if they achieved 10 bookings, then they will increase the price for the next person (i.e. 11th onwards) who booked until the next tier is achieved. The girl had told me a certain price and informed me only has 4 places left. I had no idea the price will be increased later. Recently when I checked again, she quoted me a higher price but still a few places left. How can this be? I felt cheated and did not feel I want to proceed with the trip.

I felt miserable. There goes my second hope of going to Tibet. So I prayed to Tsongkhapa this morning to help me look for an alternative trip either to Tibet or elsewhere. I even considered possibility of doing a long personal retreat locally if I failed to go overseas trip. I bowed and made a mandala offering to him mentally and with the hand mudra. Today a family member contacted me and gave me a number to contact. It was the same number of another travel agency as the one I had tried to contact the previous day. When I tried calling the previous day, the number just could not get through. I thought may be they had changed their number. I had been told they also had a trip to Tibet but it was end of May, this month. I definitely cannot go end of May as my leave had been booked for June. Somehow the trip dates had to fit my annual leave and not the other way around.

Surprise... surprise...! When I phoned today, the phone number got through. The most surprising was that they actually had a tour trip planned for the time I had booked my annual leave. It was just amazing. And I knew it was Je Tsongkhapa's blessings. Now the sun of hope had arisen again. What is good about this trip planned by this agency is that it is not subject to tiered pricing and it flies from my home town. The one planned by Reliance was ex-KL. It means I had to make extra domestic travel back to my home town. The other thing is that the time it returns from China was at odd hours (i.e. after midnight) and there would not be any connecting flight back to my home town. I had to sleep over night at a hotel and incurs more expenses. With this latest agency, there would not be any such hassles. Nevertheless the question of money, money, money remains. Is there anyone who wants to sponsor my trip...even partially? Hahaha... happy dreaming!

Even though I could see a ray of hope but I am mindful there are many things that could still obstruct the trip from turning into reality. However, whether it eventually turn into reality or not, I got to thank my dear Je Tsongkhapa for answering my prayer so quickly. It also depends on whether the tour gets its required number of people. We'll see how it goes.

2 comments:

s said...

rejoice in your good fortune and hope that u will succeed in doing your pilgrimage and have deeper insights into Buddhism....

Mahabodhiyana said...

thanks.