Yesterday, September 11, 2011, was a day of reflection—and the day that started our StrongWomen Across America tour. After smooth, uneventful travel, Eleanor Heidkamp-Young, Rebecca Seguin, and I made it into Anchorage early in the afternoon. The weather was beautiful the whole flight up from Seattle. The Canadian and Alaskan mountains towered out the right side of the plane. As we were approaching Anchorage, Denali loomed off in the distance. A short, stunning drive later and we were in Palmer at our bed and breakfast.
The Vagabond Blues was our dinner spot—a funky, small restaurant nearby. We were able to order good, wholesome food. Potato leek soup, salad, vegetable quiche, and a decent sandwich nourished us. Due to the four-hour time difference and the fact that I am under the weather a bit, we went to bed early.
I woke up this morning to a couple of inspiring emails. The first was from my colleague, Mark Fenton. Mark has been helping us develop the tour and is a national expert on engaging communities to create change, especially around the physical activity environment. Here is his note to me:
As you engage with the Change Clubs and individuals across the country, “challenge everyone you see to aim as high as possible in their aspirations for their communities. We have no time for nibbling around the edges—we need healthier policies from top to bottom!”
The second note came from my closet colleague, Chris Economos. She sent me this quote of inspiration:
“If you don’t like the way the world is, you change it. You have an obligation to change it. You just do it one step at a time.”
- Marian Wright Edelman
I will use these two notes for encouragement as Eleanor, Rebecca, and I engage with the Change Clubs and all of the people we meet along our long journey.