I sent this letter out to many people and realized there are readers who might not be on the mailing list, so here it is:
The observance of Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday and legacy was a day of reflection for me. I thought of the time on my journey when I spent my birthday in Selma, AL. Particularly, about my walk across the Edmund Pettus bridge and the letter I wrote our President from the s teps of the Brown A.M.E. Church. I also thought about the time I spent with all of you and how my life has been nourished by many strangers and the overall experience of P.E.A.C.E SCOOTER. So many wonderful people came into my life and confirmed that we share a similar dream of liberation.
A warm bow for your presence here, and your role,whether relative or direct, which contributes to my transformational journey. Back home after finishing a 12 week ride for Peace, I’ve had some time to heal, to reflect and to give thanks for the beauty I discovered and created in the world. So many people in my life have given me the inspiration to delve deeply into my own pursuits and also to appreciate the interconnectivity in our world. One can learn a lot from making a 11,000 mile epic ride, on a little scooter. For now, the most important thing to emphasize is the grace I felt always, each day, while witnessing the convergence of many teachings/beliefs and the reliance on them to surpass obstacles. It wasn’t easy, and I think about that now that the miles are mostly behind me.
On one hand, it seems like time is inching past in comparison to my time on the road, but on the other hand it seems I have barely had time to catch my breath and maintain responsibilities at home/work. Before I know it, another month has passed without extending my gratitude to each of you. I came to you empty-handed and left with my heart full of gratitude.
You offered me your homes, your scooter repair services, and your time. You gave me laughs, your advice, your blessings, and your donations. You shared with me cups of coffee, your definitions of Peace, and your vision for our future. In so many ways, you inspired and encouraged me to keep going. This month, as I compiled the statistics from P.E.A.C.E Scooter 2007, I was overwhelmed by how many blessings I received in 11,198 miles and 85 days. I am especially thankful to Philip McCaleb and Genuine Scooter Company for fully supporting the ride, bringing me in touch with the scooter community and helping raise awareness about Peace.
I will ride again this summer to finish the “Missing Peace”. P.E.A.C.E Scooter 2008 will consist of a approximately 1,500 miles from Washington, DC to Fargo, ND, with more emphasis on video blogging- PeaceTV. The following passage, by MLK, represents the compass that leads me again into service, uniting with others in our nation, our global community, as we work together tirelessly for Peace.
“During these days of human travail we must encourage creative dissenters…As they spread the propaganda of war, we must spread the propaganda of Peace…We must demonstrate, teach, and preach, until the very foundations of our nation are shaken…I have tried to be honest. To be honest is to confront the truth. However unpleasant and incovenient the truth may be, I believe we must expose and face it if we are to achieve a better quality of American life.”
It is obvious there is a confluence of people already embodying the change that is beginning to be demanded from those in power. There is no better time to continue working for peace (peacing) zealously, and I do hope you will work with me!
Thank you for the support you have given. Speak Your Peace has developed from the Peace ride, it is a social art project to host One Billion words of Peace through my website. Cruising through the magical terrain of Joshua Tree National Park, I realized that it was the words of John Lennon, “If a billion people were thinking about Peace, there would be Peace in our world,” which first inspired the Peace Ride, so it seems only fitting to seek One Billion Peace Definitions. Crazy? Maybe, but the Iraq War budget nears One Trillion.
I’m determined to generate income through my art; it is a worth pursuit for everyone to experience an intersection between their passion and income. For now, I’m working hard, though enjoyably, as a barista back home in Charlottesville, VA. In my spare time I’ve been doing some video editing of last summer’s footage and so I created a youtube account where you can not just view those entries, but ADD YOUR OWN. Perhaps your Peace definition video will make it into the documentary I am creating.
Please keep in touch and contribute your words of Peace, but most of all : envision Peace and enjoy your time. Everyday.
With Gratitude and Respect, and pointing TWO fingers, not one,
Alix “Peace Scootergirl” Bryan
“If you have come to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us walk together…” Australian Aboriginal Activist Group, 1970s