Udaipur, City of Lakes

Our third, and possibly last sojourn to Udaipur, in South Rajasthan, was lovely. As is our pattern, we first reacquainted ourselves with the beautiful Dream Heaven Guesthouse, then began to revisit the Old City. The owners of Dream Heaven, Deep and Dilip, brothers-in-law, were happy to see us, on this, our third visit, (the first was in 2009, the second in 2012).

We arrived at Dream Heaven in the late afternoon, just before dusk, after a morning flight from Kangra, near Dharamshala, into Indira Gandhi Airport, Delhi, followed by an afternoon flight to Udaipur, and a busy one hour drive into the city. We noticed that the traffic is heavier now than on other visits.

The first thing one does at Dream Heaven after depositing their baggage in the room, is visit the marble deck at the top of the building. We had forgotten just how breathtaking the view of the lake and the five century old city is at dusk.

We were given a lovely corner room with two view points, a step up from our usual room over the kitchen, a great room with a view, but also with kitchen fumes from time to time!

Dream Heaven, built high above the lakefront, was Deep’s father`s dream, and is built on the family land where Deep was born. Opened in 2006, with just two rooms and four dining tables, it now has eighteen rooms. The additions, all designed by Deep, have turned the guesthouse into a fascinating above ground rabbit warren, with its narrow passages on many levels, joined by stairways of varying heights and steepness.

The simple Dream Heaven rooms are all decorated in traditional Rajasthani style, with wall murals and wall hangings in beautiful colours. It is truly what Deep and his family dreamt of, a  relaxing guesthouse for visitors to come and feel safe and comfortable in. The family members all live in the building, each group in their own quarters, and that adds to the homey feeling.

The Dream Heaven owners and their staff really do live up to their motto of honesty and hospitality and their belief that “Guests are like god”. The delicious food served in the deck restaurant and the incredible views made it hard for us to eat anywhere else, but we did patronize other restaurants at lunchtime.


Copyright 2018 Ellen Besso

Ellen Besso is a former Life Coach & Counsellor & a Reiki Practitioner. She is the author of An Indian Sojourn: One woman’s spiritual experience of travel & volunteering, and Surviving Eldercare: Where their needs end & yours begin, both available through Amazon.





You Stood in Line to Be Here Now

New Message from the Council of Grandmothers through Sharon McErlane
“Blessed are all beings,” the Grandmothers said.  “You are blessed.  Everyone on Earth is blessed.  Perhaps you think that because there is so much strife in the world today, you are not blessed, but cursed to be living in these times.  No!  We assure you the opposite is true.  You stood in line to be here on Earth now!” they cried.  “We are speaking figuratively, but in essence, you did.  You wanted very much to be part of life here at this moment in time!
“Courage is called for now and your soul wanted to experience courage. Steadiness is called for and you wanted that too.  You wanted a challenge, to be utilized for the highest good and so you were allowed to be part of the great shifting that’s begun.  You are blessed indeed.
“Things are not as they seem,” they said, nodding to reassure me.  “We have told you this before and we know it’s hard for you to grasp.  A BIG picture is being formed now and a confluence of events is taking place, an intersecting of energies as they overlap and dovetail with one another.  This is taking place in the most creative and unsuspecting ways.  What’s occurring is so astounding that all you can do is stand back and marvel at it.  Greater changes than you can imagine will begin to reveal themselves now.  What is unfolding is indeed marvelous and as you gain in understanding, you will join in marveling at it.
“The gross selfishness and the disrespect for living things that you are witnessing now are aberrations.  Sickness, grotesque formations of energy, and ancient thought forms are surfacing from the primeval ooze.  This dark and heavy energy must come out.  It must rise and be eliminated from Earth’s energy field.  As it rises up, it is hideous to behold and it stinks!
“However, this ugliness is in the process of coming up and out, up and out.  It will not last,” the Grandmothers said.  “Let it come.  Let it swell up from everywhere on Earth, from all levels of society.  Let it rise and lift off.  You may even be aware of it coming up out of you and out of others too.  Simply watch it as it goes.  It’s time for it to leave.
“As this seemingly dreadful drama takes place on Earth, hold fast to us and to the Net of Light.  Let yourself rest, anchored in light, held steady while all that is ready to be eliminated comes to the surface.  This is your work now … bearing witness and allowing what must go to go.  We stand with you.” 

To Learn more about the Great Council of the Grandmothers and how to work with the Net of Light, go to www.netoflight.org

Celebrating Friendship, Our Final Weeks in Dharamshala

After our two peak experiences during the week of November 13th, our remaining ten days were spent visiting with friends, usually in their home. The week after the Golden Temple trip and meeting the Dalai Lama, we developed an Indian cold, usually a hard hit for us, blamed on the changing weather by both Tibetans and Indians. I don’t disagree with that popular belief, but also think our immune systems are not used to the cold germs in India. After seeing a different Doctor of Tibetan Medicine, a middle aged nun, this time right in the McLeod Ganj office, we took it easy for a few days, going out to eat but otherwise lying low.

The Friday after meeting His Holiness, we climbed down the trail from Pema Thang Guesthouse to Chonor House below for dinner, a five minute hike on rutted dirt. I had been trying to have of meal of their tasty chicken teriyaki for several days, but they had run out of chicken due to a  large visiting group requesting chicken momos, a delight somewhat similar to perogies.

On this particular night the Hummingbird Restaurant was catering a dinner for all the staff of the Norbulingka Institute, the Tibetan Government in Exile’s cultural workshop and retail facility in another town down the mountain. We could not order from the menu, we were told, but were invited to attend the dinner, as their guests, even though we were not staying at the hotel. This invitation was typical of Tibetan and Indian hospitality; both in the home and in hotels.

We sat a while before the food was ready, but it was well worth the wait. Everything at this restaurant is fresh and high quality and the chefs had outdone themselves on this occasion. First we were offered some birthday cake, and chose a small slice. (Cake first appears to be a Tibetan custom, as it happened again at the birthday dinner of our young friend.) The dinner on this evening consisted of appetizers, barbecued skewered fish and meats, then a hot buffet, followed by a dessert station consisting of mini cakes and puddings. Everything was delicious, and we particularly enjoyed the fish, not having eaten fish for several weeks.

During our time in McLeod Ganj we had the honour of visiting five Tibetan homes, more than usual, for mostly Tibetan meals. Our friend K cooked each of the three times we visited her and her husband, she would not take no for an answer. It didn’t matter if we had just eaten, we had to eat more! If K spoke English it would have made no difference; she just ignored my words and hand motions as if they were invisible!

Our final evening in Dharamshala, we went down the hill to Dr. D’s, for her daughter’s birthday dinner, this time Indian takeout, her choice. It was a perfect ending to our trip, dining with our closest friends in their small apartment where we had sat on many previous visits to the town.

The next morning we checked out of Pema Thang at 7:30 am and took a taxi downhill towards Kangra Airport. Near the back entrance to the temple I spied K and T on the road, ready to begin their circumambulation of the temple grounds, (clockwise waking around a sacred site), followed by their morning visit to the temple itself for worship, their first visit of the day. At my request our driver stopped the car, and more tashi deleks, (translated simply as “blessings and good luck”), and hugs were exchanged before we reluctantly climbed back inside the taxi.

Saying goodbye to our dear friends was hard. We spent many happy hours in Dr. D’s apartment over ten years and I have a snapshot of it in my memory. We will visit her and her family in their new home in Canada in a year or two. I took a picture of K & T at the door of their home so they will live on in my memory.

Now, after some weeks back home, I am beginning to realize how my journey with the Council of Grandmothers and the Net of Light, begun last spring, affected me during this very special time in Dharamshala. During my first two plus weeks there I cast the Net of Light, the Divine Light that holds and protects this planet and all beings on it, around the Dalai Lama’s temple repeatedly each day. Shortly after meeting His Holiness, I suddenly received the message that the net was now cast around the entire town, and that my work was completed.

We have visited this small town in the foothills of the Himalayas five times over ten years, and have developed many enduring friendships. What I will always remember about McLeod Ganj, Dharamshala, whether I return or not, is my comfort level there, how at home I feel. “It feels like a second home to me”, Don says.

Note: You can read Alma Anderson’s channelled messages about my lifetimes in the Dharamshala area in An Indian Sojourn.


Ellen Besso is a former Life Coach & Counsellor & a Reiki Practitioner. She is the author of An Indian Sojourn: One woman’s spiritual experience of travel & volunteering, and Surviving Eldercare: Where their needs end & yours begin, both available through Amazon.

Next: We return to Udaipur, Rajasthan to visit our Indian friends.