Showered, sheltered and fed!
Yesterday, 6/13, was pouring rain in the Catskill Mountains. The Wood family kindly let me stay in their house for another day, and sleep on their couch. They took me grocery shopping, and showed me the town, and the damage that a hurricane did two years ago.
Today, biked a solid 60 miles, with lots of hill climbing. Like this one -- I had to push my bike up a continuous hill for more than a mile. But the butt appreciates a break from the seat.
Feeling great, not even tired at the end of the day, but trying to rest before I feel tired, and eat before I am hungry.
At noon, stopped by Grapevine Farms to refill water bottle. The ladies were so kind they filled my bottles with ice water, and gave me three tasty cookies for free.
Along the way, people smile, nod and wave. Two girls shouted support from the other side of the street, and asked me if I want another water bottle. I am so amazed and humbled by the kindness, support, and trust of people along the way.
Around 6pm, I started asking people if I could camp in their backyard. A family said yes, and allowed me to have a warm shower, and even fed me a full dinner, with meat! What an upgrade from the mosquito-infested Boy Scout camp of the first day!
When asking families if I could camp in their backyard, at first, there is always concerns and suspicion, naturally. But within 10 minutes of chatting, as we learn more of one another, the barriers come down, and good will and positive assumptions prevail. It is heart-warming to experience this process every evening. We are all human beings, and have the same heart.
These days, when meeting new people, I will tell then that I am from China as soon as I can, because it takes the awkward burden of guessing off from them. I also adopted the nick name "Z," because it saves people the embarrassment of mispronouncing my name.
Every day, I feel the value of my time at Hampshire. When I see the logo of a restaurant, I don't see a logo -- I see "cultural appropriation" =)