For foot-massage purposes and skin hydration and softening, I used Vaseline for some time, also called petroleum jelly because someone patented the word Vaseline. All day Sankirtan and the contact with the air seems to dry out my feet’s skin. Multiple cracks may appear and if the bare flesh is exposed, it can be painful. Even walking becomes painful. Remedy is required. But I noticed that Vaseline caused some blisters on the skin. Vaseline is a mineral product (petroleum jelly) and is actually not really compatible with human skin. Srila Prabhupada Himself used mustard seed oil for general massage and sandalwood oil for head massage. In India, mustard seed oil is more easily available than in Australia. Near ISKCON Chandigarh, India, there is a shop that sells only mustard seed oil. That’s all they sell. It must be related directly to the producer. They sell small quantities and wholesale quantities as well.
After some consideration, I decided to settle for olive oil instead, at AU$ 6 per liter and quite easily available. During the virus crisis, income became scarce and I replaced it with rice bran oil, which is three times cheaper. HG Krishna Gana Prabhu of New Govardhana catering recommends rice bran oil even for cooking as a cheap replacement for ghee, the preferred cooking medium. However, rice brand oil is not quite as good as olive oil for my purposes and I decided to purchase more olive oil. Now comes the punch line. When I arrived at the supermarket I found to my delight that olive oil was discounted not 10%, not 20%, not even 30 or 40 but a massive 50%. I could not believe my luck. The product was not out of date, neither was this offer available anywhere else. I do not know the actual reason for this massive discount, but I stocked up indeed.
This instance is like the testing of one grain of rice to get an indication of the state of the cooking. It means to me that for big or small things Australia remains the land of tremendous opportunities and of nice people as well, who amply deserve Lord Caitanya’s and Srila Prabhupada’s matchless gift of Krishna consciousness. Hare Krishna!