In a post I wrote last week, a rabbi and native American guide gave Abigail Pogrebin the same advice a Zen master probably would give to cyclists: Look ahead. Of course, they are as likely to be giving that advice about living as about riding.
In response, Leo--a frequent and favorite commenter--pointed out that the surest way to hit a piece of glass on the road is to be nervous about it and stare at it.
They are all correct: Whatever journey you take--on a bicycle or by some other means--you should keep your sight focused in front of you. The only way to reach your destination is to look ahead to it, not under you at the road (or path) you're traveling.
One group of cyclists has had their sights set on San Diego, which they hope to reach during the first week of September, since setting out from Seattle three weeks ago. They have not been deterred by the usual obstacles--weather, terrain and, in a few cases, lack of previous experience with long rides. But they can be forgiven for looking over their shoulders every now and again--especially as they near San Diego.
You see, they came to the US as children--with parents who entered this country illegally. At least one member of the group has Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status and is a graduate student. Most of the others, however, do not and could be subject to being stopped--especially on the roads approaching San Diego, which are full of immigration checkpoints.
The purpose of their ride, known as the Journey to Justice, is, not surprisingly, to call attention to people with plights like theirs and to persuade Congress to pass--and the President to sign--the so-called DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act, which has been introduced and reintroduced in Congress since 2001. Some of the riders had previously participated in a weeks-long vigil in front of the White House. If nothing else, the riders said, pedaling 1300 miles is better exercise than hunkering down on the sidewalk.
The Journey to Justice is notable for one other reason. Other rides like it have support vans, which are stocked with energy bars, fruit, water and first aid items. On the other hand, JtJ's vehicle has bears something else its riders may need: a lawyer.