Sai Sister Meenatchi Ji from India says:
Hi, I am Meenatchi. I am from Chennai. I wish to share my first time visit to Shirdi with you all here. OM SAI RAM. First of all I want to thank Hetal Ji for creating this site. This is a great platform through which all devotees of the Lord BABA are united. Thanks a lot for creating such a wonderful platform, where we can all share our experiences. May BABA keep you with all peacefulness and happiness. Please feel free to correct this experience wherever its required.
I would like share my experience of my first time visit to Shirdi, which happened last week. I went to Shirdi on Dec 26th 2012. I can’t express the bliss of getting the Darshan of our father there in Shirdi. I wish everyone should have the feel at least once in their life. I pray to BABA to help to put into the words to the feel I had in Shirdi, the holy place.
This visit was the first visit to me and also to my parents. Both my parents are retired and they were at my native place. For past few months, I wanted to go Shirdi, but I was not sure how I would be going as it was 17 hours journey from my place. I told the desire of going to Shirdi to my father. He also believed in BABA and said we can go and said that he will check if he can book ticket in IRCTC tourism package.
Unfortunately, seats were full from Chennai to Shirdi package. So I left the hope of going, thinking that our supreme father will call me later to His place. Suddenly one day my dad called me asked that he has tickets from Bangalore to Shirdi in the package. I was so happy that finally I’ll be seeing our supreme father in the holy place of Shirdi. We started from Bangalore on 26th Dec at 7.20 pm. The train reached Kopargaon the next day at 3 pm.
Before the travel, one of my friend, who is also an ardent devotee of SAI, informed me that there is option of booking online tickets in Shirdi and it has been opened few months back. So my dad has booked a pass for three for 5.30 pm Darshan. As we were about to reach Kopargaon, I was little worried that how we will manage in Shirdi since myself and my parents were not that much fluent in Hindi and also we were new to the place and we don’t know anything. But I prayed to BABA to help us with someone to communicate with us in English and help us to have wonderful Darshan of Him. It was a great miracle that when we got down in Kopargaon, a Tamil (my mother tongue) family also got down there and they also came in the same package and will be staying in the same hotel and also will be travelling back in the same train with us. Moreover they have been to Shirdi many times.
Thus BABA helped us by providing a family, who knows our language and also familiar with Shirdi and were able to guide us. I was so happy. When we were on the way to Shirdi from station, the lady of that family told us that they are also offering senior citizen passes. Since both my parents are senior citizens, they can try those passes also and I can accompany them. I was so happy that BABA has showed a path for us. We reached hotel at 4 and we quickly took bath and I was very much eager to see our supreme father. I can’t explain the feel of being the place where our father has been. I was floating in air. I felt so peaceful in Shirdi, even before seeing our SAI.
We bought the prasads outside and garland for Our SAI. While selecting the garland, my mother told me that, you will select the garland, which Baba wants for Him. We went through gate 3 (as per the instruction from that Tamil lady) and showed our online pass near Shani Gate. We were left in. we walked and came near to the place, where BABA was sitting like maharaja. For the first time, I had seen our father in Shirdi. I felt the heaven. My heart was content that I couldn’t wish for anything else. I gave all the money that my friends has given to me to put in hundi and said to BABA that I have delivered their wishes. Since it was so crowded, I couldn’t able to see the Samadhi properly. I gave the garland to the priest. He took the garland and kept on the Samadhi and didn’t give back.
I didn’t have the feel to leave the place. We were forced to come out side. But then I wanted again to see our father. The lady, who came with us in train, said that the next day was Dattatreya Jayanthi and it was special to see SAI on that day. I was so worried on how we will be seeing Him as we don’t have any pass for Thursday and also we need to vacate our hotel by 8.00 am. I left it to BABA whether to give Darshan on Thursday. I told my father that I wanted to have another Darshan of BABA, as we had quick one. And also I said I will enquire about the senior citizen pass for Thursday, so that we could see our father in the early morning. I was so deliberate to see our father on Thursday. My mother told me that don’t worry you will get Darshan of BABA on Thursday, if BABA wants to.
I went to PRO and enquired whether we have any passes like that. He said yes and you can avail one for now also. It was a free Darshan also. I was so happy that I m going to see BABA again. So we got the pass and we went again. And the PRO asked to come in morning 7 to get the pass for tomorrow Darshan. I was so happy that I will be seeing BABA on Thursday again.
I couldn’t control my tears, when I saw our father again. My mom told that before itself that I’ll be able to see BABA close very soon as I didn’t get the chance last time. When I was nearing BABA, I noticed that priest was getting the garlands and giving back to them after showing to BABA. But for me, they kept in the BABA‘s place. Then only I realised my mom’s words that Baba has selected His garland for Himself. I was speechless.
When I went near, I wanted to get some prasadms as I didn’t have anything to offer that time. A woman before asked for flowers to the priest there. I also called the priest and SaI Ram and opened my hands. That time he took a red rose from the BABA SAMADHI itself and gave me in my hands. I couldn’t control my tears. As there was only one flower there and red being my favorite colour. After that my mother also got the flowers, but from somewhere else and not from Samadhi. Both I and my mother were so happy. It was a priceless gift from BABA to me.
Then we went to hotel, had dinner and settled. But my mind was with BABA. So I asked again to dad whether we can go again to see SAI. We left my mom in the room and again went to purchase. But I asked my dad to get the Darshan first. There were fewer queues and again we had a very quick Darshan. I was so happy and peaceful that night.
The next day, we went to temple at 5.30 am. My dad said we can try the queue itself rather than waiting for 7 am. Queue was little big and we made to be in queue and got the Darshan of BABA at 8. My dad got so irritated on us that we might have missed the vehicle which IRCTC have booked for Shani temple. I was so upset that in our last Darshan of that visit in Shirdi, my dad was so angry and he didn’t feel that he had seen BABA and when we reached our hotel, we found out that vehicle has left us and we need to take another vehicle to catch them. My dad started to scold. But I was happy that I have seen BABA on Thursday and whatever happens, it happens for good. So I was so calm. And I was chanting BABA’s name.
Then we hired a separate vehicle and went Shani temple. On the way we got that vehicle, which we were about to go. In that the Tamil family was there and they told we don’t have to vacate the hotel at 8 itself and we had time till 3pm. Since the train was about to arrive at 4.45 pm.
We had Darshan and my father was back to normal. I was so unhappy in leaving Shirdi and I wanted to see our SAI once again. We returned back to hotel at 2 pm and then only we came to know that train was 8 hours late and it will arrive only at 10 pm in the night. I was so happy that I can now see one more time of our father. We extended our room stay and we three went again and had a great Darshan of our SAI. I was so happy and left my life under the feet of our father. He is father, not only to me but to the whole world. Totally we had five Darshan of our supreme father in the stay on two days. The train was not only 8 hours delay. It was 14 hours delay. But BABA was with us throughout the journey and made us to reach our places safely.
I had asked our father to make this first memorable to my family. It was indeed very memorable to us. Oh supreme SAI. I can’t thank You enough. I can only pray to You to keep me and every one under Your wings always and accept us as Your children. JAI SAI RAM.
© Devotees Experiences with Shirdi Sai Baba