Sometimes we hear devotees lamenting that they were not able to have the personal association of Srila Prabhupada because some heavy-handed devotee kept them away or other worldly circumstance prevented the opportunity. I find that everyone had the equal opportunity to be near and intimate with Srila Prabhupada, provided that the person in question was ready, willing and able to do anything and everything that Srila Prabhupada requested at all times.
One particular instance comes to mind. It happened on the roof of the early Mayapur temple complex. It was Prabhupada’s habit to sometimes take his morning walk on the roof of the Mayapur temple building with his disciples in tow. One particular morning Guru Kripa Swami began talking to Srila prabhupada about some of the mismanagement problems of the Vrindaban temple and guesthouse project. After he had patiently heard Guru Kripa Swami out, Srila Prabhupada said, “So you should go there immediately and take charge of the situation and rectify it.” Guru Kripa Swami was taken aback, and obviously hesitant to become involved with what was not particularly to his liking, said to Srila Prabhupada that he had other responsibilities in Japan, so when should he go to Vrindaban? Srila Prabhupada replied, “Immediately. You should go right now. Why wait? Go immediately.” Guru Kripa Swami was not prepared for such an immediate task, and he hemmed and hawed, trying to get Srila Prabhupada to understand his point of view.
The point is that to be in the close proximity of Srila Prabhupada required this kind of dedication: to be ready to do anything and everything at all times and places to satisfy Srila Prabhupada. This was the attitude and mindset of Srila Prabhupada’s confidential disciples. However faulty they might have been, they were always ready to carry out the order of Srila Prabhupada at a moments notice.