DC Gandhiwarming 2011

The second annual Gandhiwarming was another heartwarming success!! The warming took place at 3 pm on Sunday and we were really lucky with the weather yesterday, not tooo cold and it was a beautiful sunny day.  [Today got so much colder, was dipping below freezing as I was leaving DC shiver, shiver]  With some pre-warming needs to take care of after a delicious breakfast by the amazing Megan and Erik! : diwas dishes to find [i forgot mine in nola, ack!], ladder borrowed from Erik’s studio, he also made a handy long hook while there in case the ladder wouldn’t get close enough, hat fitting adjustments, flowers to buy, and finishing off my scarf to give away, Sunday morning was filled with things to do pre-warming.

Gandhi is right in front of the Indian embassy and the area doesn’t seem to get too much foot traffic, a lot more car traffic. After we ran around town a bit looking for the odds and ends listed above, we parked near Gandhi, made some last estimations, and settled in at Kramer books so that I could do my knitting and hat fitting and Team Gandhiwarmer did some flower shopping [so many places were closed on sunday!]  As 3pm neared we rolled on over to Gandhi and gathered the ladder and hat and scarf giveaways to assemble.  Pretty much right as we set up the ladder next to Gandhi – he is 8’8″ on top of a 4′ stone pedestal – a police car rolls up.. we had just layed out the hats, gotten the diwas going.. I was thinking, should I jump up on the ladder and get the scarf and hat on before he stops me?!  I decided to go over and talk to him, turned out he was with the Secret Service – he did allow us to put the scarf and hat on him, – Thank you kind sir! but with the agreement that we would also take it down. [wonh, wanh]

Gladly we proceeded with our warming plan and got the ladder situated right – and then got the hat on with a little adjusting.. I had tightened the hat a little too much [I thought it looked a bit too big when standing on the ground, but indeed it turned out to be that big! 40″ in diameter!!] But it got all settled and nestled on his lovely bronzed head, being careful of his delicate glasses.  Hat and scarf on, we proceeded with setting the diwas at his feet, flower petals spread, then beautiful flower garland and pom garland made by the amazing ladies of K1-D2! All the while Rishi Dan played his bansuri flute beautifully [also a knitter btw, yay Rishi!], the soft music set a peaceful and cozy mood for the event.  People passing gathered and we had an awesome group of peeps to spread the warmth!

It’s hard to beat the warming feeling of Gandhiwarmer, it truly feels so good to honor Gandhi and revive a bit of his spirit in the cold winter air.  Your heart really feels warmed by the happiness you see on everyone’s faces and the people who pick up scarves or hats, filled with the joy of receiving a present.  Today I stopped back by to see what might be left, to my surprise everything was still there!  While snapping a few photos a couple of women stopped who needed some scarves. To my great surprise, one of the women picked the one I made!! I told her I made it and she said “I can really have it?” I said yes, yes!!  Then she said, “Gandhi helped the people right?  Maybe he can help me.”  I was really touched and said I sure do hope so.  We all need a little Gandhi in our lives don’t we?

It was a quick weekend trip and it was so great to see all of my amigas and a great honor to be able to have accomplished another Gandhiwarming, I’m so looking forward to next year’s already! Thank you deeply to everyone who came, Team Gandhiwarmer, and to Gandhi.

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