May 25, 2006
It had been two and a half weeks on the road.
Two and a half weeks hop scotching thru the middle states of America, where people attend church Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays, dine at fast food restaurants morning, noon and night, and chew tobacco like it’s bubble gum.
Two and half weeks longing for the lefty-ness of California, the safety and security of my circle of friends, the Starbucks, the sunshine, the wheatgrass shots, the sushi rolls, the beach and the mountain views.
Two and a half weeks dealing with mullet-heads who smoke cigarettes where they eat and proudly practice politics of intolerance and ignorance.
Two and a half weeks eating at taverns that serve domestic beers, double beef burgers, deep fried chicken fried steaks, and wilted iceberg lettuce salads.
Two and a half weeks dealing with station attendants who peer over their registers and pierce holes through my soul because I don’t look like one of them.
Two and a half weeks living in the heartland of America and feeling like a foreigner in my own country.
Two and a half weeks of losing hope.
County after county. Truck stop after truck stop. It all looked the same: flat and gray. A yellow dashed line in the middle of the road is the only thing that broke up the monotony.
But in a moment that all changed.
I was somewhere west of Des Moines, IA, driving on Interstate 80, when I looked up from my dash board and spotted, on the back of a blue Chrysler-mini van, something I hadn’t ever seen — a sticker that read Barack Obama.
In that moment, my negativity and sadness, my hopelessness and emptiness, my frustration and anger, my fear and loneliness dissolved into the road behind me. In that moment, it was all gone.
A feeling of hope washed over me when I saw for myself that a change is on its way.
Yes it is, I thought. Yes it is.