Hero

9 January, 2010

Le Petite Prince

This boy is my hero. Has been. Always will be.

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.

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The Last Frontier

3 October, 2009

Greetings from Anchorage!

It’s been quite the adventure since I last wrote from Canada. We actually encountered more “troubles” (if you could call it that) at the US border than going into the Canadian border. But that’s ok, we made it back with ourselves, our van, everything in the van, and a load of new friends back in beautiful Canada.

We crossed the border around 11 or 12, then we were straight off to Seattle to drop our van off at a former Roadie’s house, unpack our suitcases of personal stuff, and repack them with a whole lot of IC merch. All this before 5am so that we could make it to the airport and catch our flight out at 6am. When we arrived at Sarah’s house, there were cookies and milk to re-energize us, so that we could get straight into packing… yum.

Our flight was nice, there was no one on it basically. I mean, who doesn’t fly to Alaska at 6am on a Wednesday morning these days?? Anywhoo, as we began our flight, we spread out on our own seats and almost immediately crashed because we had yet to sleep. I left some belongings on the floor as I caught some sleep, including my digital camera… but when I woke up to our decent, my camera was nowhere to be found. I am still baffled… and camera-less. So I apologize for the lack of pictures!

But let me tell you when I say that Alaska is one of the most beautiful places that I have ever had the chance to visit. Even while you are driving to work, you can see the snow capped mountains on the horizon and it is simply gorgeous… words cannot convey properly.

I plan on living here one day. Especially in this little part of midtown called the Renaissance district. I love this strip. LOVE IT. First off, we had a screening at this Fair Trade store called GrassRoots. This store has fair trade imports from all around the world, including paper made from elephant poop. I wanted some, but couldn’t rationalize spending money on dung paper in my current financial position… but I was very tempted! Next store is a shop called Woolie, and it is everything wool. It is amazing the detail and workmanship that goes into these things. Not to mention that there are coffee shops on either end, both rad. One even has Gaelic dancing every Tuesday night. The author of this blog may or may not have participated… Oh, and there is an amazing book shop, a bead shop, a Tattoo parlor, an REI, and a thrift store a block away. Forrest’s heaven? Indeed.

Yes, Alaska is a beautiful state, and I cannot wait to revisit. But until then… it’s off to Washington! Seattle, here I come.

Canada eh?

16 September, 2009

Cliche title, I know. But I couldn’t help myself.

If you couldn’t tell yet, I have made it up to Canada. I am actually writing this from a VW Westfalia outside a rad contact’s house. That is where I have been sleeping.

Anyways, for those of you who don’t already know this, the Pacific Northwest is absolutely gorgeous. Driving up through Oregon, we stopped in Portland for a night and stayed at an ex-Roadie’s house. The house was amazing, built in 1911 and the walls were lined with books. I kept thinking about how much I would love to live in a house like that, and in such an amazing city… until I heard that it was the 2nd largest city in the US for unemployment… wamp.

Next we drove up through Washington and stayed in s little town near Olympia. Even though we had to spend most our time cooped up in a little coffee shop working away at our tour, I stole the occasional glance outside to see the stunning mountains that surrounded me.

The very next day we entered into Canada, and boy we were pretty nervous about driving a van packed to the brim (and I tell you… this thing is PACKED) with merchandise… but we don’t want the border to know or else we might be taxed. Lawfully of course, but we need all the money we can get right now so that it can go straight to Uganda and not Canada, no offense guys. But I loved that the first thing I saw when I entered Canada was llamas. That just made my day.

That night Brian and I continued our journey up to Kelowna, which is yet another rad city (is anyone starting to see a pattern here?). It’s been really great driving hour after hour with Brian and getting to really now him. We stayed at yet another awesome house that was built in the 1800’s.

Needless to say, my time spent in Canada, though it has been pretty stressful with plenty of sleep deprivation, has been beyond pleasant. So many trees.

But now I must get some shut-eye before another chalk full day of screenings and booking. Hopefully I can grab some free time to post some pictures. Until then…

Peace and Love,

Forrest

A Thousand Apologies

1 September, 2009

I will begin this post by with this disclaimer: I have come to realize that I have fallen in the inevitable drought of postings. When I began this dialogue with the internet (also known as a blog), I told myself that I would update frequently, everyday perhaps. But the subtle truth has revealed itself, and I have not been able to keep up with my initial pledge.

C’est la vie. No?

That’s what happens in life, right? We get busy. And I must say, that even though I have been busy this past month, working for Invisible Children has had an amazingly profound effect on my self. And I say “self” for multiple reasons. There have been more than a handful of nights where I felt as though my soul, heart and mind were at the brink of explosion. I have learned so much about just how much stuff the human self can really absorb and retain. But the key ingredient to keeping all the thoughts, feelings, emotions, information, and such inside is one’s intensity and willingness to learn about that particular subject matter. If I were on the same crash course for Calculus as I am for the conflict in Eastern Africa, I probably would explode. But when I am learning about a topic that I love, Uganda, and the conflict that resides there, my self becomes a porous vessel – itching to be filled.

And filled it is becoming.

From inspirational training sessions with Jason about the importance of our personal story, to Laren discussing the history of this conflict, to Ben Keesey discussing communication skills, to Tom Shadyak talking about the truth of the world. I am lapping it all up as a dehydrated dog laps water.

And I constantly want more.

What a great feeling. I will come out and say that this is the most impactful experience of my young life thus far. And I have yet to hit the road. The journey and growth that awaits me on those long stretches of asphalt is what I have been looking forward too for a long time… and it is a week off. So to all those who have supported me, whether it be financially or other, I want to thank you for making this experience a reality.

I suppose the purpose of this post is to say sorry for not posting, to give you a super loaded idea of what I have been doing, and to tell you that I love and appreciate all of you.

Dream Big. Safe Journeys.

There Is So Much More

1 September, 2009

This song speaks a thousand words to my soul.

When I heard the news,
my heart fell on the floor.
I was on a plane on my way to Baltimore.
In these troubled times it’s hard enough as it is.
My soul has a known a better life than this.

I wonder how so many can be in so much pain,
while others don’t seem to feel a thing.
Then I curse my whiteness
and I get so damn depressed.
In a world of suffering,
why should I be so blessed?

I heard about a women who lives in Colorado.
She built a monument of sorts behind the garage door,
where everyday she prays for all whom are born
and all whose souls have passed on.
Sometimes my trouble gets so thick,
I can’t see how I’m gonna get through it.
But, then I’d rather be stuck up in a tree
then be tied to it.

There is so much more.

I don’t feel comfortable with the way my clothes fit.
I cant get used to my bodys limits.
I got some fancy shoes to try and kick away these blues.
They cost a lot of money but they arent worth a thing.
I wanna free my feet from the broken glass and concrete.
I need to get out of this city.
Lay apon the ground stare a hole in the sky,
wondering where I go when I die.
…When I die.

-Brett Dennen

F***ing Dream It

5 August, 2009

We had an intense day of training today, and all I could think of during the training was how secure I feel with working for this organization. I had many questions and many doubts about the transparency of the company and what the company actually does on the ground in Uganda. Despite my fears of the company, I still knew I needed to become a Roadie and make a difference. So I was pleasantly surprised with how quickly and how in depth the officials of the company reassured my worries.

I am meant to be here.

Though I have known for over a month now, the fact that I am a Roadie set in this morning as I sat down at my “desk” to begin our training for the epic tour to come. This tour is unique. This tour will be different. And it all fits.

Delicious ambiguity.

Jason made an amazing statement today, or rather he told all of us all of a phrase that the 3 film makers use with one another…

“F***ing Dream It”

Dream it I will. And while I’m at it, I’ll shoot for the moon.

60 People… 1 House

3 August, 2009

The VillaThe time has come! I have officially moved into the Roadie House!!!! I got here at around 11am and the only other person here was Claire, my other teammate from PNW! We chatted it up for awhile until the others started pouring in. It’s about 11pm now and there are 35/60 of the Roadies here now and the house is already insane… to say the least. But I am excited about the remaining 25 people to come! I have to leave now to be entertained by my fellow Roadies…. this is going to be an experience of a lifetime.

The View

My Region!

26 July, 2009

Ok, so I am sorry for the delay, but if you haven’t heard yet, I received a call from the IC headquarters on Thursday before I left for Tahoe, and told me my region!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Drum Roll Please…… PACIFIC NORTHWEST here I come!

That’s right everybody, not only will I be visiting the great states of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, but I will also have the brilliant pleasure of riding the roads of Western Canada… AND into ALASKA! I am very excited about my region. Traveling to Alaska has been one of my greatest wishes, and now I get to do it in a van with 3 other amazing Roadies on a mission for peace!

aurora_kuenzli

Maybe I can get a chance to catch a glimpse of this beauty… Here’s for hoping!

Support Screening

19 July, 2009

The Flyer

Yeah, so the flyer speaks for itself. But please ask questions if you have ’em! Can’t wait to see you there!

Chapter 2

17 July, 2009

Fund RaisingDonation Jar

As much as I would love to say that this chapter is called FUN raising instead of fund raising… I just can’t. Alas, such is the way of life and our society, it takes some to make some! So as an unpaid intern for 5 months, I need some dough to keep my body functioning, that way I can make some serious dough for the kids. And so it begins! Today I had the goal that I was going to send off my 25 support letters that I have been working on… but I always like to put a special touch on everything I do. Problem: special touch = copious amounts of TIME. And finally after 2 days of hard work and construction, my letters are all sealed up, folded nicely and stamped, ready to hit the road and travel! That is until they get to the designated hands… then hopefully they will inspire enough to evoke a giving sensation from the reader… I digress. But yeah, the above image is one of my ploys for accumulating the money I need, then the letters below are another. I will be doing a screening soon, so keep your eyes peeled if you are in the Sacramento area! Until then… safe journeys.

Peace and love.Letters