The day started at Cooma Public School when the Captains Natalie and Noah, and Vice Captains Kaylen and Zaka led the team in.
Grahak Cunningham, our Australiam 5000 km champion, introduced the program.
Everyone was enjoying themselves.
We all took a moment to feel peace inside ourselves.
After feeling peace inside ourselves, we always feel better.
It was a beautiful assembly with year 4/5D giving us a fantastic collage of their Peace drawings and year 5/6S reading their poems about Peace.
Then we all – big and small – headed outside to hold the Peace Torch.
A Peace Run day is always off to a good start when you start with a school. The energy and happiness from the students enters into you and carries you down the road.
Now we ran towards the small township of Bredbo.
It was already warming up, with a nice head wind developing. Does the wind ever blow from behind?
Today was Grahak’s last day in the team. He wanted to run his last 7 km.
Since joining the Peace Run in Adelaide, Grahak has been one of the strongest members in our team. He has been an amazing allrounder in the team.
The next school was Bredbo Public School, a sweet school of about 20 children.
Atul, our Indian representative, presented a lovely program for the small and young audience.
We were chuffed to see such an inspiring audience.
The children were enthusiastic and fun loving.
We sang the World Harmony Run song together, with actions.
We paused for a few moments' silence, to feel the depths of our hearts.
When it was asked why children should hold the Peace Torch, a cute child promptly said: "Because we hold the future."
Then it was time for the "Passport Game". Everyone has to have their passports stamped at different "country" stations around the field.
A true Australian country school. Thank you Bredbo, for such a sweet and memorable visit!
Now for the main running of the day.
We encountered many hills and a busy roads running towards Canberra.
The good gradients of hills gave us a good workout.
My running stint was intense today. Our section was on the main road to Canberra. Stacey is sick, so Yashodevi and I took on the distance. The stench from roadside rotting kangaroo carcasses was overwhelming at times and we had a headwind to battle with too. The plus side of running on a main road was the many “parps” from passing cars. That helped to keep me cheerful.
Headwind, followed by more headwind.
As we came closer to Canberra for our run into Queanbeyan, the terrain was all so familiar it seemed like coming home (I lived in Canberra for 30 years).
As we pushed on into the headwind we were acknowledged by many motorists with either a wave or a friendly toot.
Running into town.
We finished our run for the day by crossing the border into the ACT on Canberra Avenue, leaving a small run into Canberra for tomorrow.
It was then time to drive into the heart of Queanbeyan to meet with the other teams ...
... for a celebratory ice cream prior to our meeting at Queanbeyan City Council.
Unfortunately Mayor Tim Overall was in Sydney but he sent a very supportive message. Fortunately we were met by Councillor Sue Whelan, who has served Queanbeyan for over 30 years. While we spoke of our Peace Run and its goals, Sue spoke of the multicultural diversity in Queanbeyan.
Margaret and Helen, the Council staff who organised this meeting, provided a lovely table of refreshments with a friendly welcome and tea and biccies to help the runners recover from the day's running. Thank you very much ladies, it was thoroughly enjoyed!
It feels like victory to finally reach the Capital - although the final stretch of running will be tomorrow. It is a gift of treasure to have been part of the Peace Run Team across Australia. Sri Chinmoy has created something uniquely special to inspire us all to find and value our Peace within.
When the day's events were all over, we headed to our accommodation at the Canberra City YHA where Courtney and Dan made the team feel extremely welcome. Thank you very much for hosting the team for the next five nights of their Canberra stay!
Torch carried by Amalendu Edelsten(Australia),
Nurari Merry(Great Britain),
Prabhakar Street (Canada),
Pranava Runar Gigja(Iceland),
Stacey Marsh(New Zealand),
Sukhajata Cranfield(New Zealand),
Prabhakar Street ,
The torch has travelled
from Cooma, NSW to Queanbeyan, NSW.