July 5th in Nebraska

[By: Jerry Stewart]

McCook, Nebraska

Hot, humid. It saps my energy. Even now, nearing 11 PM, I’m sweating. After getting to camp late this afternoon, I fell asleep on a blanket in the grass. Napped through a meeting Chris led on the March vision. Today was his last day with us. After serving as Colorado State Coordinator and staying around to help out for a few days into Nebraska, we’ll be sad to see him go.

A lot of discussion at dinner around oil trains. We’ve seen a few speed past over the last few days. It’s appropriate because tomorrow starts a national week of action to stop the increasingly common practice of shipping oil by rail. McCook, where we’re staying, just happens to have a train station that serves the BNSF Railway, the railway that ships more Bakken crude oil than all the others. We’ll hold a vigil there tomorrow morning to honor the 47 people who were killed last year in an oil train explosion in Quebec.

Sometimes I get caught up by tiredness, by discomfort, by personality conflicts, and by a wide array of other struggles in day-to-day camp life. Right now, the end of the March looms ahead of us due to money issues.  It’s said that we’ve not much more than 11 days left. With mosquitos swarming as I sat writing a press release, I reflected on the 47 people who lost their lives. What we’re going through on this March is nothing in comparison. Thinking of those people, I’m more determined, more committed, more pushed to do better.