Monday, March 19, 2007


This morning I woke early with the intention of catching up on some emails and over due blogging, but the battery in the Airstream was completely dead, and it was still dark outside. I really wanted to go back to sleep for an hour or so until the daylight lit my workspace, but I felt a pull towards the hill country that surrounded me. Using my blackberry screen as a flashlight, I rummaged through the Airstream until I found my running shoes and ipod, both hardly used since we started this journey 18 days ago.

Not sure if there were lurking bob cats in the bush that surrounded me or if I could make it up the first hill, my run began with fear and hesitation. It was still completely dark outside, and my legs were heavy. Even though I promised myself I would work out regularly and take time to quiet my mind each day on this trip, the reality had been 2 events a day, meeting fascinating people every night, and too much McChicken honey wraps (which are pretty amazing by the way).

Physical activity had been minimal, but the adrenaline rush of TOMS acceptance, new people, and endless possibilities filled my mind and fueled my body each day. In all my life, I have never seen something so viral and exciting as TOMS, and meeting countless people who shared my passion for helping those less fortunate the past 2 weeks, I felt a responsibility to waste not one minute of the day with anything that would not further our cause. There is no doubt we are making history with each tour stop, and that the collective efforts of everyone we meet will propel TOMS and our mission ever forward. We truly can change how people think about the world around us by uniting those we meet with a simple shoe and the TOMS story, which hopefully they tell every time they wear TOMS. Just a year ago it was an idea. Now I think�.if every person we meet (about 200 people a day) tells just 10 people about TOMS, and they in turn share the story or our Shoe Drop video with their friends, well you get the picture��by the end of this tour we could have thousands and thousands more kids with shoes on their feet, and as important, an equal amount of people thinking more about the injustices of the world and how they can do something to alleviate them.

Ok, so you can see why I have not been working out or taking any time for myself this trip. The people we meet are just too intoxicating, and once in that state of endless possibilities, doing anything, even if it is good for you, seems like a waste of precious time. Well, that was my thought before I set out on my jog through the hill country this morning.


A few miles later as the sun began to rise and my legs found the ground beneath me, the most amazing thing happened. It started to mist outside. Now I know this might not sound like an earth shattering event, and perhaps its affect on me was intensified by the fact that I had not felt clean since my last real shower, but the mist created a tingle all over my body, which quickly spread to my mind. As I ran faster up and down the hills, cutting through the clouds of mist, I felt all my fears, anxieties, and responsibilities wash away. I felt lighter. I thought of the next shoe drop, of Africa, of my favorite cities around the world, everything and nothing at the same time, and eventually, of myself. I realized, while �mist induced� that this was all happening so fast, and that if I did not stop �to feel the mist�, it would pass me by. I HAD to take time for myself�.to run, to write, to pray. And I had to do it EVERY DAY.

We all do. It does not matter if you work a 9-5 job in a tall office building, go to class for 8 hours a day, or take care of your 3 year old�s never ceasing needs, whatever you are working on, wherever you are trying to go cannot distract you completely from where you are, who you are�.today. We all have �important� stuff going on in our lives�. responsibilities, friends, bills, causes, but at the end of the day, we also have life, and it is precious, and today I was reminded, you must spend some time alone each day to truly experience it.




1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The future is an illusion. We assume it comes since it has come before. Sunrise is a testimony to a moment, that could be defined as "the" moment, the moment that allows us not the satisfaction of what we have accomplished, but the satisfaction of pure life. Passive longing to help is not enough, aggresive helping is not enough, self-actualization of purpose is. I thank you again Blake for promoting the potential philanthropic person that is inside all of us ready to come out. It's a treasure to be influenced by someone that uses the way the world works, to change how the world works.

Paul Hemminger

- Thriving helper
Devoted to all charities.:)
Except one's with low turnaround and high administrative costs.