“The thing about the show “Wagontrain” is that the never really get anywhere…they just keep wagontraining.”- Stand By Me

When I was in Washington and Oregon camping and walking where Lewis and Clarke had, made me really understand the undertaking that they engaged. Walking the trails now that countless wagoneers scrambled allows me to somewhat existentially commiserate with their failings and fortunes. Rolled ankles, the lack of water, and the steepness of craggy trails would be enough to dissuade the weak hearted and the timid.

Crossing the boarder into Arizona, the first of many saguaro standing sentinel at the border gently reminding me that I am no longer near water of any kind.

I was asked before starting this adventure what I hoped to accomplish. The comment was said disparagingly, as if “Who does this idiot think he is?”. Now when people ask me what do I expect, I tell them point bank, world peace. If I am capable of achieving internal peace and peace with all whom I come in contact, then the world can do it as well. I was no more selfish than anyone else, but no less either. If we all be sweep our own porch, the world will be clean.

Yesterday, I counted how many bottles and cans I saw strewn by the wayside. In a measured quarter mile, I counted 312 bottles and cans. That was on one side of the road. Both sides would conceivably be about 600. That is 2400 in a mile. In the 90 miles that I just ran and walked it would be 144,000. Who are we kidding? We must begin to be the change that we want to see. We CAN be the difference.

Thankfully some people are being that change. I heard from my friend Garry the other day that:

“Hi Peace….I have a story to tell you…about a monk who I met and gave health care to in Laos…he was 58 years old and had missing toes…and a gnarled foot. It was injured from an american bomb when he was 19 years old and a novice monk. 

I couldn’t imagine anything more peaceful than a novice monk. I felt so honored to be able to give him my skills as a nurse, my love as a fellow human and an apology for what the bomb had done to change his life. It was a profound moment for me…

I had lunch yesterday with one of my students. She is a practicing RN and upgrading herself to a nurse practitioner. She recently returned from Laos with me. she is co-owner of her own clinic in Palo Alto. In Laos, she was with me when we visited a school that was desperately in need of new desks, chairs and repairs…well yesterday at lunch…she wrote a check to cover new desks, chairs, doors, windows, paint, door knobs…etc…for 600 students. 

She is an amazing example selfless giving….and her donation is about the cost of one treatment for one wealthy american and it will affect hundreds of children…and their families.” 

In another update, the child and mother that I wrote about some months ago that were separated at birth were reunited just before Christmas and able to share their first Xmas together as a family.

Feel loved dear friends, because of you all I do.