Gradually the retreat guests trickle in. Most of them have been here before and are quickly spreading out, out and in. Sun, tranquility, all doors open, the cat sleeping in the middle of the driveway, the smell of freshly cut grass, not a sound to be found.
There is a soft knock on the door: ‘Excuse me, but I thought that here…’ A concerned lady thinks she has arrived on the wrong day or at the wrong house, because, she says: ‘It is like this here quiet and it all looks so neat’.
I laugh: ‘and that’s why you thought: this can’t be a monastic center?’ Now we have to laugh together. The wonderful laughter at unmasked nonsense. ‘We’ll keep it in’ I say: ‘so quiet, so well-maintained, it cannot be a monastic center’.