I’ll admit right up front, I know little about the Freedom Riders and their quest to desegregate the American South and put an end to Jim Crow law. I was a child when Martin Luther King Jr. was leading peaceful protests to change our nation.
Sunday, my knowledge of the Freedom Riders improved a notch. Our local art museum just closed a show by the painter Charlotta Janssen called Freedom Riders & Bus Boycotters: Threads of a Story. Janssen found mugshots for when the Freedom Riders were arrested and painted their portraits based on the mugshots, then used collage to fill in around the portraits with newspaper clippings or photographs or mugshots.
Check out this video. She explains her work and how she came up with the idea.
Well, anyways, today, we went to the museum, and some women from the African-American community had sing-out at the museum, and they hooked up Janssen through Skype, so she could talk about the songs, all spirituals that the Freedom Riders apparently sang on the buses and when they got arrested and thrown in jail. This part of our history needs to be known. We also have to never again allow someone to have his or her freedoms denied because of race, religion, sexual orientation or ethnic background.
So what does this have to do with exercise? I walked to downtown to meet my wife at church then walked from church to the museum then from the museum to home (I also walked to a restaurant across the street from the museum to have lunch while my wife’s church had its annual congregational meeting and then back to church). All told, I probably walked about 4 miles. I also rode my bicycle from home to work, three miles round trip. I did not ride back to work after I had supper. Sleet started falling, turning the streets into a hockey rink. I ended up walking back to work, then getting a ride home from a co-worker. I just hope he got home safely.
As the new week begins, I have to make sure I get my running in. The weather is supposed to be all over the place this week. Rain and warm temps at the beginning of the week, then snow and cold at the turn of the new month and the end of the Janathon.