United States 27 April: Saratt, S.C. - Anderson, S.C.

Peace Blossoming in the South!!

A big thank you to Howard Johnson Inn for generously providing accommodation for half of the team.

And thank you to Jatin Mehta and his father for so enthusiastically embracing our peace message!!

At AC Marriott Spartanburg, as soon as we stepped out of the van we met people who were thrilled to support the Peace Run!

A big thank you to the wonderful staff and management of AC Hotels Marriott for generously accommodating the other half of the team!!

We started our days miles beside the green pastures of Saratt, South Carolina

Sveta enjoying a moment of Peace before hitting the road.

Santiva running strong through the charming town of Pacolet.

Santiva and Sweta took a detour to Pacolet Middle school to ask for directions, and were invited to give an impromptu presentation to the PE class!

Santiva told the kids about when she first began running as a teenager in Mexico, at a time when girls did not run! She was inspired to be a pioneer.

We all need peace in our heart.

A big thank you to Pacolet Middle School for so spontaneously taking part and joining our family of Peace lovers!

After the cold weather of the last couple of weeks, Harita enjoyed running the sun!

Reaching Spartanburg, we met quite a few super friendly locals. There will be a big cycle race on tomorrow, so people were getting ready for it!

This man shared his wisdom about the world being one family.

This lovely woman pulled over to video us running!

Our next stop was Buena Vista Elementary School in Greer. This is a really great school! They have been doing projects based on Peace all year and have kids from over 40 different countries!

As we ran in many kids were lining the track holding flags from their native countries.
What country is this girl from? The answer will be at the end of the report...

There was beautiful artwork all around the outside of the field!

The school had a Peace Pole project this year and ended up installing not one but four peace poles around the school!

Here is one of the PEace Poles.

We were thrilled to run in past all the kids!!

The kids made garlands from origami paper cranes which they bestowed us with on our arrival. So nice!!

Some of us also got garlands of the world...

We began by singing our Peace Run song.

Time for the world harmony run song with actions! Super fun with so many peace lovers!

Peace is inside us all.

In the heart of course!!

Time to pass the torch!

The kindergarten kids joined in from behind the fence- the whole school was together with us!

super sweet!!

We are so deeply grateful to Buena Vista Art Teacher, Wendy Jackson, who contacted The Peace Run several months ago to request our team to visit her school. She has been the driving force behind the schools focus on peace, and is a great inspiration to us all!

We gave Sri Chinmoy's artwork entitled "Peace is priceless" to the school.
Also a big thank you to school principal, David Burgess, partially obscured on the far left, for standing behind such a progressive and inclusive international school spirit. He commented that as adults we need to nurture and encourage all the qualities that the children naturally have, and try not to destroy them.

And it was time for the teachers to run a lap!!

Of course this was a lot of fun for teachers and much more fun for the children!

And finally it was time to run!!

The whole world was running!!

Sveta from Russia was all smiles at the end of the meeting...We get so much encouragement and energy from the peace lovers we meet along the way!

Nikolaus headed out to begin the miles for the afternoon running, and the kids super enthusiastically accompanied him.

A true peace-lover says,
“I have nothing new to give you,
 O world.
I have only myself to offer
 To you,
Lovingly and self-givingly.”
-Sri Chinmoy

A big thank you to Buena Vista Elementary for sharing your peace with us!!!
And the answer is Spain! ;)

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