May 9, 2014 Live from the road

Mobile, AL - Hattiesburg, MS

Reported by Arpan DeAngelo 97.0 mi

We were welcomed this morning by the Council Traditional School in Mobile, Alabama in a most colorful way. The whole school was out in the schoolyard cheering us on as we ran the torch in.

Two traditional dances were beautifully performed by the children, one from Mexico and the other from Spain.

The costumes were quite impressive.

This is the Spanish dance that the children performed so well.

A huge banner of artwork representing various interpretations of peace and harmony was displayed by the children.

The children were curious as to where we were running on this big U.S.A. map which included the parts of Mexico and Canada that we will run into also.

Some of the children read out peace poems by Sri Chinmoy, Founder of the Peace Run.

Some of the children had questions prepared for us to answer.

Phaedra answers one of the insightful questions by a student.

Dressed in neat uniforms with red and white shirts, the children made a huge circle around the playground as we addressed them and offered our presentation.

The children participated in our World Harmony Run song with us.

One of the favorite parts of our presentation is the skits depicting harmonious or disharmonious behaviours. The children get to judge.

The judgement was harmonious.

They agree.

One of the older students was the 'engine' of our peace train.

Many children followed behind the torch as others cheered them on.

Lots of happy faces today.

Everyone joins in the act.

Peace is friendship.

Enjoying the show.

All the children get to offer their wishes for peace and harmony.

We are so grateful to all the staff, expecially Karen Hackshaw, the Physical Education teacher who helps to organize our visit here every year. She accepted our offering of a colorful world Harmony painting by Sri Chinmoy, Founder of the Peace Run and World Harmony Run.

Principal Ms. Hattie Alexander receives our Certificate of Appreciation on behalf of the whole school.

Science Lab teacher Joyce Cromer displays her new Peace Run shirt. She always proudly wears the shirt she got in the earlier Peace Runs as well.

Next stop for one men's team was in Hattiesburg, in the pouring rain, where we were greeted by two TV News stations.

The Hawkins Elementary School gave us an enthusiastic welcome.

Sandro from Italy carried the torch into the auditorium.

Some of the colorfully dressed children help us hold our banner.

The children were ready for a pep rally and were eager to participate in our program as well.

A small team offering our presentation.

Offering their wishes and smiles for peace.

Everyone had hats ready for their own pep rally following our program.

Donna Scott accepts our Certificate of Appreciation on behalf of the whole school. Their enthusiastic support was highly appreciated.

The rest of the afternoon some of us had to run in the pouring rain.

It was quite a challenge to keep going with a chilly rain blowing into your face for hours. But the torch went on, even when it went 'out'.

Meanwhile the women's team also ran into the rain.

Vera was not too wet yet.

But soon the rain got heavy.

Now it's Phaedra's turn to get wet.

Kalyanika stays dry for the moment.

A moment of silence before her run.

Anna enjoys the rain.

Two happy runners.

Phaedra gets a downpour.

We are very grateful to Pastor Robin Morical who gave a ride to Phaedra to pick up Anna after their car battery died. Robin also kindly offered a Bible and a donation to the team and even offered them a place to stay next time we come through in two years. Expressions of kindness and friendship like Robin offered are so helpful and greatly appreciated by our team.

Torch carried by
Anna Khimchinskaia (RU), Arpan DeAngelo (US), Dennis Gribok (LU), Harita Davies (NZ), Homagni Baptista (AU), Kalyanika Forester (US), Phaedra Rosario (US), Sandro Zincarini (IT), Sarvodaya Grygoryivskyy (UA), Vera Sevastiyanova (RU).  
Arpan DeAngelo, Dennis Gribok, Harita Davies, Sandro Zincarini
The torch has travelled 97.0 mi from Mobile, AL to Hattiesburg, MS.

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