a friend of mine had an interesting week last week, so I asked her to share it…
Story and Photos By Sue Hecht
The day started at 6:00 AM at Island Park Train Station.
As I get out of my car, there are LOADS of Paparazzi. Wasn’t really expecting that (I guess I thought that they would be in Washington). So, we all had to go on autopilot and get interviewed.
Ed Mangano, [Nassau County Executive] did a speech, and [Suffolk County Executive] Steve Bellone. I had NO idea who he was, and I was so excited to see Erin Coltin from News 12, I asked him to take our picture, they both were hysterical over that. Then I got one of the three of us. I would say we left about 7-7:30AM.
During the bus ride, I get to know more people. Speaking to Peter (The Main Organizer of Walk A Mile). I learned he has had many losses in his life (which I can relate to) and he shares that he always relates back to the Book of Job and how he was given everything by God, then it was taken away. Job when asked by God about it said he still had his faith and God. It’s a bittersweet story for me.
We stop about 3/4 of the way through in Delaware. I want to buy all the cute stuff in the gift shop (the girl in me) they have all “sea” kind of stuff. I really need a lint brush, because I don’t want to look like a mess in The House. No lint brushes I settle for wet-ones.
I have learned more stories about the people on the bus, making friends. We are briefed as news comes in. We got the permit to do the walk, then we were told we have been INVITED IN to the House, the idea then was no protesting.
We are able to do a Walk from Union Square to the House, Single File like in school 🙂 we are allowed to hold Flags when we walk and then give them up when we get to the house. I have never been to Washington DC to tour, So this trip is exciting for me – and yet, sad that we have to advocate so hard to get help.
We meet up with Peter King, and there is NO paparazzi except for the ones that came with us. We pose for pictures then go to the House. The House is just beautiful, Marble everywhere, magnificent statues and paintings that are unbelievable as well as the ceiling I imagine it was like the Cistene Chapel (never been there either).
We get to watch the voting on the various Ammendments to the Sandy Relief Aid Bill. Nita Lowy is a superstar on the floor supporting NY. Ed Mangano sets up for us to go someplace to eat dinner, it’s closed so we walk a bit to the Dubliner (Irish Fare). We get word that the Final vote will occur very soon so we are in a rush to get out of there and get back to the House.
One of the Politicians tells us if they rule in our favor we can let out a little cheer. The vote is very close and yet we win and the Bill is passed. We let out cheers as Representatives are looking up at us, we get yelled at by the Speaker.
It was WELL WORTH it!
I am disappointed that there are 180 votes against the bill I found that to be disturbing. How would these people feel if this tragedy happened to them?! I am worried and feel we will need follow up on this Bill as NYC Fiscal dept already has a memo out that $ will be out in 2014.
People need help now, I also worry that the money will go to Beaches, parkways and wonder really how much help the communities will be getting.
All in all it was a long day and I believe our work is NOT done yet.