Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Gone, and Back, and Gone Again (No Aliens Involved)

So I last posted on a Tuesday, and on the Thursday afternoon I drove to a town about an hour south and got on a bus. 51 other people and I then rode all night to get to Washington D.C. early in the morning so that we could participate in the March for Life.

Of course, many other people were also doing this. Our bus stopped in Breezewood PA about 2 AM, and there was literally a bus arriving and leaving about every minute. Our stopover lasted about 15 minutes longer than planned because there were so many buses needing to refuel. As an avid reader of British novels, I was reminded of the phrase that for certain events "there were special trains 'laid on'." I had thought before about the logistics of hiring buses, but never about having so many of them converging on the same place at the same time. There was a behind-the-scenes "cast of thousands".

If you got your information about the March from a standard media source, you may have thought that the entire march was merely thousands. According to an experienced police officer that one of the people on our bus talked to -- yeah, about 450 of those thousands. The thing was MASSIVE. Certainly bigger than I imagined, and I have been relying on alternative media for years. (Click here to see a short film about the media response to the March.)

And then, after standing for a couple of hours listening to the pre-march rally speakers, and spending TWO hours walking the mile-and-a half from the Mall to the Supreme Court building --because it was shoulder-to-shoulder and nose-to-back --, we got back on the bus and rode all night back to Michigan. I wasn't the oldest person on the bus (he had me beaten by almost 15 years), but I have decided that when I do this again, I am going to take several days and stay with family or friends in the D.C. area. But worth it?? Absolutely! It was beyond encouraging for someone who has been involved in this movement for 25 years to see the enormous numbers of kids who weren't even born then who turn out for this march. (Fifteen or so of them were on our bus.) A friend who also went wants to take the youth group she leads next year.

I was (not surprisingly) pretty tired for the next few days. And then our son-in-law Larry had to travel on business, so Branwen came to stay, with Daniel and Matthew. I am not at all repentant for not posting during that time -- reading Madeline and the Gypsies over and over was far more important! I could have posted in the last day or two, but I didn't. And tomorrow Roger and I leave for our winter week in Stratford. So I'll be scarce again, but I promise you, aliens have nothing to do with it! (Unless you count Canadians... but then we'll be in Canada, so I guess we'll be the aliens..... oh, never mind....)


Sarah in Ottawa said...

Have a wondeful time in Stratford! I miss that area; I grew up about an hour and a half away and I went to Uni in Guelph (less than an hour). It's so charming, and I hope that you both have a relaxing time after your CRAZY month of December!

Christina said...

oooh Stratford! I miss living close to there. Have an amazing time!

Elisa Auffhammer said...

It sounds like you had a wonderful (albeit long) trip! And who wouldn't love time with the grandkids? I wish my mother lived closer..or is it that I should live closer to her? Have fun on your vacation and let us know how it feels to be an alien!

Lauren said...

So proud of you for going to the march! I wish we could have gone this year, but it would just have been too much for Nate. If you come again for a longer stretch, you know you have a place to stay, right? You're always welcome!

NC Sue said...

I was unable to attend but hope to be able to go sometime. To all of you who took the time to stand for life - God bless you! Thank you on behalf of one who was blessed with surviving her mother's pregnancy. Thank God SHE chose life!