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Top 10 things we’ve learned on how to (or not to) conduct a See2See Tour

 

“Winnie the Bago” or “Jaba the Bago,” it’s well worth taking the trip!

 

By Teresa Cutts

  1. Our fantasy of “hours of thoughtful conversations and discernment on the road” was precluded by being in a noisy RV (which we nicknamed variously “Winnie the Bago” or “Jaba the Bago” depending on our level of grumpiness) that rode like being inside a washing machine and sounded like that too.
  2. Bring your coat and scarf for warmth. Most not-for-profits, wisely, keep their heat on low to prevent ungodly electric bills.
  3. Giving “voice” and visibility to often-struggling not-for-profits and ministries was like an early Christmas present for most of them as they were enormously grateful to have time (on average 2 hours) to truly tell their stories and deeply show and share their work (vs. 10 minutes on a public health or other conference panel).
  4. Starbucks parking lots are not designed for the Winnebago crowd.
  5. Visiting four not-for-profits in one day is like gorging on a rich fact and hope-laden banquet—it’s too much to digest properly (two should be the max).
  6. Having a friendly, but fake golden retriever painted on our RV door elicits happiness from fellow travelers, ups our cool kitsch factor, and is a lot easier than feeding, watering and providing rest stops to a real dog—highly recommended.
  7. Living on the road my Friends (to play on Townes Van Zandt’s line in the song, “Pancho and Lefty”) doesn’t leave your skin like iron, but you do feel at times like you’d prefer to be doused in kerosene than ride 30 more miles.
  8. Our inspiring friends on the road bounce between hope for what is emerging, despite powers that be fighting back, and a touch of despair, for how those powers keep disparity, elitism, racism and the status quo alive.
  9. Across a few long, windy and winding roads in the over 3,000 miles we drove and some logistically tough days, often the smallest and most grassroots organizations were the mightiest, doing very powerful work.
  10. It’s well worth taking the trip, for learning firsthand about the souls, spirits and work of the Warriors for Justice we met on the road. Come along when we do our second, then third, fourth and beyond See2See Tours (hopefully after a couple of months of rest)!
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