I rose early, as usual, this morning in Reno, and just savoured the fresh air and calmness that accent a weekend morning on the still emerging East Side of the Biggest Little City in the World. I made the mental adjustments needed for our trip to Oakland: No Carson City, Virginia City or Lake Tahoe, this time around. We would not stop at Donner Pass or in Sacramento, either. The time we had available, four hours from Noon to 4 PM, would be needed to get straight to Oakland, give or take a few minutes for a potty break.
The occasion this afternoon was special. Along Oakland’s Lake Merritt, between 100-200 Baha’is gathered to walk the shoreline, commemorating the visit and walk here by Abdu’l-Baha, the eldest son of Baha’ullah, the Founder of our Faith, and His immediate successor, 100 years ago this month. Tomorrow, even more Baha’is will gather in San Francisco, to honour Abdu’l-Baha’s visit to that stately gem of a city, a day or so after His stay in Oakland.
We got to Oakland in plenty of time to join in the opening prayer, then walked a 3.2 mile course, around the beautiful lake. I was quickly joined by a friend from several years ago, who is a Baha’i in Phoenix. “C” shared his grief from a personal loss, and I am honoured to have been able to help him through it, just a small amount. I think, more and more, that we are put in situations where we can be of assistance to those in need. How we handle such situations determines our own self-worth.
My friends from Reno, Tom and Michele, took to the route like hiking masters, though they hadn’t been on the trail in quite some time. We covered about 2.75 miles of the route, before prudence took charge, and “Mima” Michele declared victory. It was time for dinner, anyway, being nearly 7 PM.
I was delighted to also meet up with another Baha’i friend from the Bay Area, Marta R., and take a couple of photos of her family, with “C” joining in one of the shots.
Marta R. and family, Lake Merritt
Here is Lake Merritt, and here are my friends and I, honouring Abdu’l-Baha’s vision.
After bidding adieu to Marta, “C” and the rest of the Baha’is, the three of us capped a wonderful day with a Thai dinner at this fine establishment.
Gertrude Stein would be pleasantly amazed. There is a “there” in Oakland. “Mima’s” family can also be proud of her, for this was no ordinary effort.