As part of the Climate Ride experience, I have signed up for Advocacy Day once we arrive in DC, (they'll set up meetings with my Congressional reps where we can advocate for action in person!) Part of the training for these meetings involves building our "personal stories": the reason why climate change advocacy is so important to us.
My story involves being literally hit over the head by climate change. Back in 2005 (last weekend of August to be exact) I was attending a forum on simple living in Estes Park, Colorado, at the base of Rocky Mountain National Park. As the group was sitting by a river, taking a break from a short hike, I heard a crack and next thing I knew a watched a 40' pine tree come crashing toward me. It hit me on the head, stabbed me in the leg and broke my finger—in short I was extremely fortunate I wasn't more hurt. Someone wisely took a few photos of the offending tree and we knew in an instant that it was the victim of dreaded pine beetles, a critter that has decimated forests throughout the Pacific Northwest and Rocky Mountains—a critter whose population has exploded due to warming climate trends. Since I had driven my car to Estes Park, I had to wait all bandaged up in a hotel by the Denver airport for 3 days for a friend to arrive to help drive me back to Los Angeles. As I sat there, I had nothing but time to watch Hurricane Katrina (and it's after effects) demolish New Orleans. I began to realize that climate change was not just a single issue, it is many complex and catastrophic problems that create devastating environmental, health, and social justice issues.
Climate change truly is the most important issue facing humanity. Unlike other causes, you can't buy your way into safety; it is something that affects every single living being. So I ride in hope of bringing awareness to this critical cause!
T-Minus: 12 days
Fundraising: $2895... thank you all for helping me make my fundraising minimum!
Total training miles ridden: 1669.29
Total books read since started: 31