This year is proving to be very expensive. It has taken more than I bargained to lose. It has taken away my grandmother. The only person I have known who refused to feed the left over banana skin to the milkman’s goat believing goats should be treated fairly and given the banana and not the discarded skin. Also, the one person who NEVER forgot my birthday. A devoted follower of Krishna she believed He would take care of her and her loved ones unconditionally. Through all the many tribulations that Life offered, her unwavering faith in her Lord, remained firm. She decided to live the last 6 years in an ashram renouncing all that was worldly. At 76, she was the healthiest person we knew, with none of the complaints that the generation younger to her suffered. Her eye sight hadn’t dimmed nor had her conviction that forgiveness is the only power we possess. For a young widow with limited formal education and confined to a conservative household for most of her life, her worth was expressed in the tears of people whose lives she had touched. It was at her demise that we knew of the number of people who benefited from her meager pension. Of the many deprived children whose education she took care of. Of the wretched girl during whose wedding, she gave her gold bangle. Of the sightless-abandoned-old-widow whom she had adopted as her mother. It must be the Lord’s way, when death came swiftly as she slipped into a cerebral thrombosis induced coma while saying her morning prayers. It has left my mother with the guilt of not given a chance to do anything and a reaffirmed belief that for the truly faithful a peaceful death is the Lord's gift. For the faithless like me, she has stirred a desire to seek goodness in this godless world.