BARBARA JO KIRSHBAUM
2005 BREAST CANCER 3•DAY
3Day--Philadelphia--Sept. 23-25, 2005--2000 walkers--$6 million
The walk began with predictions for thunderstorms on Sat and Sun. I wasn't too concerned since I usually travel prepared for any weather! The surprise was that the weather for all 3 days was great--a little warm and sunny on Fri., but less so on Sat and Sun. So, in fact it was great walking weather.
The walk began in Langhorne, a suburb of Philadelphia, at the Sesame Park. Some of the Sesame characters even cheered us on as we began the walk at 7 a.m. on Fri. We walked by many cornfields and back roads. The back roads and trails are easier on the feet, but I enjoy the small towns far more. Over the 3 days it was a mixture of rural areas and small towns, as well as the cornfields.
I spoke with Anne--a 23year old woman doing this because she was 'already seeing too much' cancer. She is a spirited young woman and we walked/talked about 8 miles. It was such easy conversation, it was hard to realize that I could have been her grandmother. Thanks Anne for the miles of time together and I know that you will make things happen in your life.
Spent some walk time with Bill--a man in his 40's who was doing this event alone. Often times when men are alone they are doing this because they have a dear one who has been effected. Bill was doing this 'to give back to the community'. I saw him the next day and noticed he was wearing a green t-shirt--the t-shirt you receive when you sign up for 2006. Go Bill!
It is always special to see Cathy. She is from Chicago and is a survivor. I have been seeing her on events all over the country for several years. She is on the crew and is usually driving a van picking up those that need assistance. I have no idea how many events she has done, but I know it is a lot. Happy Birthday Cathy!
The walk had great community support. There were many people at the cheering sections and so many people at closing ceremonies. That all means so much to the walkers.
One of the fun parts of the walks for me now is that there are people at every walk that I have met previously someplace! They are so kind to come up to me and reconnect. I usually do not remember which walk, since so much of that has blended together, after 53 walks, but I love that they do that.
I forgot to mention in the last journal that the new inspirational book "Why We Walk" is in the bookstores. It is a lovely hardback coffee table book with stories/pictures of people doing these breast cancer walks. My story is on page 102, and I am so proud to be a part of this. Who would have thought! Thanks to Deb and Paula for including me.
Also wanted to mention that after my last walk in LA, the Sun. LA Times did a very nice article. Check it out here.
On to New York to participate in the last Avon Walk for 2005.
Barbara Jo Kirshbaum