May Lee who is training at Sogenji, a Rinzai Temple in Japan, sent a long letter and wrote in detail about her experiences at the monastery. Her schedule (specially during sesshins) sounds very rigorous with even less personal time than we get at our sesshin. The lines that I struck me the most were "sesshin schedule is so tight and yet it feels so liberating because one has to strip everything down to bare essentials [and take away all complications], which makes me realize how confused we are about the meaning of being 'free'... ".
She has her head shaved now which she said "it feels great not to have to bother with it at all and it also feels like it represents better how I feel". She is also doing Takahatsu (going around to ask for alms) with the "boys" -- three times a month - chanting "Ho". I hear from Nobuko that at Bukkokuji, women weren't allowed to go for Takahatsu. I have her letter and would be happy to share it with anyone who wants to get a peek into her life there!