Dearest Jan, John and Sandy,
I am not sure where to begin my letter of thanks because since the cruise my life has changed in unbelievable ways.
As you know I work and cook in a friary (a monastery for Franciscan friars) some are elderly and very sick. One of the friars, with a lung transplant, had a major emergency surgery while we were at sea. When I got back to Tampa I went from the airport to ICU and I have been at his bedside since then. I know how to pray but now, I was able to mediate – a beautiful gift I learned from Yogi Desai, one of the cruise presenters. Somehow this gave me new eyes. I saw sadness and sickness everywhere I looked. After the many lectures on the cruise I could see that much of the suffering if not all was due to bad nutrition and lifestyle. I could only wish that I knew about Macrobiotics a few years ago so that healing foods could have helped the friars.
I watched them pour chemical solutions into Father’s very sick body and saw him go through many painful procedures – it seemed the same scenario was going on in every room throughout the hospital. I love Father’s doctors and hospital staff and I am sure they do what they feel is best but there were no whole grains and very few greens offered on his food trays. They actually have a MacDonald’s at the hospital. I was disheartened – but I made up my mind not to look back but to devote the rest of my days to help people in my life to heal naturally; and the wealth of knowledge that I learned on the cruise was the beginning.
Then an inspiration came, while at Father’s bedside, to offer to set-up and manage a vegan booth in the hospital food court. I was turned down. Then on Easter Sunday I went to a family picnic. My niece is married to a doctor – I had not seen them for 3 years. They asked what was going on in my life and I told them about all of the above. The doctor said that he was a partner in 5 Florida Medical Clinics and that they were looking for a food service company. He asked me to come and see the facility.
I went on Thursday and expressed that I would love to give it a try but that I needed to be faithful to my principals – this would be more than a business venture but a calling and that I truly wanted to help people. He still asked if I would consider cooking some meat products. I said I was sorry but I could not – maybe this was not the venue for me. He said to send him a menu and he would be back in touch.
I just received a phone call from him tonight. He spoke with his boss who spoke with the CEO and they are both very interested in the concept! If all goes well I hope to call it “Caring Cafe” – it will provide a full vegan breakfast, lunch and a special Macro Healing Meal each day. The plan is that we will start with one, and who knows . . . there is a possibility of a “Caring Café” in all of the Florida Medical Clinics and beyond –
I live on a meager salary and have nothing to offer except my love and passion – I was told I needed only to request whatever is needed. How can I ever thank you for the many gifts and inspirations you’ve given me? Impossible!!! All I have is a heart filled with gratitude and a humble thank you and a prayer to wish you every blessing in heaven and on earth for your kindness, generosity and for your many works and efforts to make the world a better place.
Sincerely…from the heart,