Srila Prabhupada gets in a fight at an airport
Posted on May 31, 2015
(From The Great Transcendental Adventure by Kurma Prabhu)
Melbourne, 12 February 1973
Srila Prabhupada was due to depart mid-morning. As he relaxed and softly chanted japa in the airport departure lounge, his two young newly-initiated disciples, Sukla and Ganesa, applied sandalwood paste to his feet and forehead.
John's two-year-old son Yenaka, bare-chested, shaven-headed and wearing a little dhoti, approached Prabhupada with a flower. Prabhupada accepted the offering and smiled affectionately at the boy. A few minutes later Yenaka returned, gesturing that he wanted the flower back, and Prabhupada graciously assented.
The boy repeated the procedure a few more times, offering a flower, and then asking for it back. As he came up to take back a flower for yet another time, Srila Prabhupada held onto the flower, refusing to return it. The boy grabbed for the flower, but Prabhupada would not let it go.
Yenaka decided to change tactics. Stopping the tug-of-war, he picked up a flower and threw it at Prabhupada. Prabhupada reciprocated by throwing it back. Yenaka threw another, and so did Prabhupada. Finally, out of ammunition, Yenaka tried to grab a flower directly from Prabhupada's garland. Prabhupada grabbed the boy's hand in mid-air and held it tightly, not letting it go. With a mock grave expression, Prabhupada took a flower from his garland with his other hand and threw it at Yenaka at point-blank range.
Much to the delight of the devotees, the exchange now escalated into a fully-fledged flower fight. The boy sometimes crept up behind Prabhupada, collecting more ammunition from Madhudvisa, and throwing them with unabashed glee. Prabhupada reciprocated, all the while laughing and enjoying the fun.