We made it! At the end of our 13-plus mile walk (60-plus miles for those who started at Camp David, MD., we were tired, ready for a cold drink, and elated to be among this amazing group of people: a student from Asheville, NC, (where we had just been) considering a major in environmental studies, and a couple from Harrisonburg, VA, former dentist and high school counsellor, both environmentalists and fellow UU’s, among our walking partners for the day.
Here I am at the headquarters of Environmental Resources Management,
an organization (1776 Eye Street) that green-lighted the Keystone XL pipeline, where 54 of our number submitted themselves to arrest for trespassing.
It was almost surreal leaving the easy camaraderie and natural beauty of the walk from the Mardsen Tract where people camped overnight, along the tow paths of old canals, material-moving technology of another century, into Georgetown. Our route took us down “M” Street, the shopping and dining hub, packed on a Friday with brand-name bag toting shoppers and people sampling the upscale restaurants. (In another life, we have been both!) Thanks to the yogurt shop for handing out free samples. Impressions and echoes of the conversations from the day drift back to me now, and no doubt will in the next few days. This is an unusual group by any reckoning: Charlie and Kathy, who volunteer regularly for hurricane relief (Katrina and Greneda) and who gave us valuable information about solar panels and the Chevy Volt; folks who report from the fronts of community action (Liz Schmitt — Did I give you my card?) from Sojourners: Faith in Action for Social Justice; Walk organizer, Bill Repsher, who cheerful helped us GPS our way to a parking area for the Marsden Tract; Mark, who made sure we got our van ride back to our car. Special thanks to Greg Yost for articulate, inspiring posts about each day
of the Walk. At the end of the day, we also had a new appreciation for good shoes, socks, and feet (no blisters!). For peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (our lunch) and water when you are really, really thirsty. For the excellent camera that comes with the smart phone, and for GPS that gets you from anywhere to where you want to go, including all the Metro stops in the Washington D.C. area Within the hour, we leave The Bolger Center in Potomac, MD, where we have been most comfortably sheltered these few nights, for our rendezvous with the group at Lafayette Park for a noon rally. We’ll hear Bill McKibben and others about what we have accomplished with this action, and what more we can do. This is, after all, just one action among many planned and/or carried out in this Summer of Heat. In the spirit of the quote from Chief Seattle, just in from our buddy in Florida, Laura Kirsner, “We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children,” we have just begun.