Day 33 – Reflecting on 9/11


September 11th. The day our nation changed forever, when a faceless enemy, a twisted hearted hydra, took down two buildings and killed thousands of innocent people in a horrifying act of terror that captivated the nation’s attention for hours, days, weeks, months, and stretched over the years until even now. Like Pearl Harbor, we were attacked in an act of war.

How do we move forward from this? Never forget, but don’t let it be a symbol of fear? How do we regain faith in a world that seems so mean and hates us so? This nation is full of brave, good people. I know it, because I’ve been meeting them. The Fosque Park volunteers that maintain and work these wonderful parks are just a few I’ve met. Yesterday Donna and Robert had me over to their cozy little spot here. They are wonderfully warm people and I so enjoyed chatting with them and drinking Donna’s good coffee. She asked me how I managed, wasn’t I scared to accept help from strangers? I told her, mostly, I have a lot of faith. It’s also part of the fabric of how I’ve been brought up, you help others. It’s just what you do. So I guess, naively or not, I hope and have faith that folks will do the same for me. We are a resilient nation, we will never forget but we will, we have been, picking ourselves up and moving forward, holding those we lost forever in our hearts. Their goodness keeping us up more than the hatred of others brings us down.

However you can find your brave spot, by faith, by heavy contemplation and retrospection, going on an adventure and meeting good folks from different places, it is such an important thing to do. Just as the river will always flow, well, as long as we don’t use up all the water like what we’re doing to the poor Colorado River, people will manage to continue moving forward.

I do believe we will find it in our hearts and souls to not get bogged down in fear. We will not let the evil hatred of others stop us from doing good and continuing our lives.

Today will be a day of contemplation. Thinking of how we’ve been changed and how we continue to rise above our obstacles.

Now I’ve got to grab my gear and meet Lisa and Jim, who’ve been so kind and helpful with my over-abundance of stuff, and coffee before I head out.

Two long days ahead of me, close to fifty miles each, high heat, and a bunch of unknowns. I know for sure I’ve got places to stay for the next three nights. My make-shift sleeping arrangements didn’t keep me from a good sleep last night, so they will suffice-tent, bed roll, sheet. Maybe I SHOULD be thankful for the heat!

I am thankful for the good folks I’ve been so lucky to meet, the many strangers who’ve helped along the way. I will do my best to pay it forward, keep the love going. We could all sure use more of that.

Forward ho! For our ocean, for our rivers and bays, for our water, for our future.


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