North America 5

The Pick Up 
Dawn hasn’t broken yet, I’m lying quietly listening to the sad sound of the freight trains klaxon and hoping that the bike is what I expect.  To calm my jagged nerves I delved back into Ray Davies ‘s Americana, which is turning out to be a jolly good read.
I’m in the Bike Friday headquarters, and everything is cool. At bit like this town; Clean,Lean,Green and hopefully not Mean, or at least not meant.
Just as I said that a homeless guy dropped by to plug his phone in, but it’s no joke being homeless. I cycle past a mission for them, surrounded by cycles, you don’t have to be a Einstein to realise that to cycle around on a regular bike, in ordinary clothes plus a few plastic bags hanging from the bars ( the way I go around back home ) , identifies you as a put it bluntly. I’m feeling very self-conscious with a brand new machine sparkling with all the latest gear, even ashamed.
Unfortunately to be compassionate here suggests that you side with their situation, according to a chap at a hotdog stand that I past the time of day with. Perhaps I’m experiencing what is called compassion fatigue as this country finds it increasingly difficult to pull itself out of the recession. Perhaps it’s unrealistic to expect damaged people ( many of them are Vets )to pull themselves up by their bootstraps, without more help from society.
I took Clayton to school with his mum (my Servas hosts) and this is his favourite video 
He’s home this afternoon as its a half day to save property tax dollars . It’s not just the welfare programs that are being cut. Ronie Ray my host, he has a show on TV plus ,likes old pickup trucks luckily their property is huge by English standards with Douglas Firs and they have planted fruit trees etc. Tonight he takes Tai Chi classes in the barn .
                   So goodnight from an American Dream come true. PLG Tony 

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