May 1, 2024 Live from the road

Winston-Salem, North Carolina - Salisbury, North Carolina

Reported by Arpan DeAngelo 48.0 mi

On our early morning run we were greeted by Tessa from the Kernersville News in the center of Kernersville, North Carolina. She was able to get a photo of Puroga, from Hungary, running through town towards Winston-Salem.

Tessa very kindly interviewed Josef and Arpan for her article in tomorrow's newspaper. We are so grateful to her and other media personal who are interested and enthusiastic about covering our journey and to share the importance of peace. At the same time the people that we meet along the way can have an opportunity to express what peace means to them and how we can spread it, one person at a time.

In this southern state of North Carolina we have been meeting very friendly people who display their southern hospitality when they encounter us and are happy to share the peace torch as they make their own wishes or prayers for peace, for a better, safer and happier world. We parked in this gentleman's driveway as we waited for our runner. He is an army veteran and came out to politely ask what we were doing. He was happy to share the torch and offer his own wishes for a better world.

This young lady was in her car leaving her driveway and immediately stopped to offer her smile and good wishes with the Peace Torch. Again, another example of true southern hospitality and friendliness. There are many more unexpected situations like this every day which we are not always prepared to record as we do not always have a camera or phone while running.

We finally reached our next destination of the morning at the Winston-Salem City Hall. Mayor Allen Joines was there to kindly greet us and to offer his wisdom on how public service can bring about more peace and happiness in his beautiful city.

After introducing ourselves and our countries we sang our main Peace Run song, composed by Sri Chinmoy, Founder of the Oneness-Home Peace Run. He believed that there are many avenues for sharing peace such as music, art, sports and fitness, education, faith and service to our communities.

It was very uplifting to hear some very encouraging stories and news about Winston-Salem and his decades of service here. The initiatives and programs that he has helped to create have truly made this city a better place to live in over the years. His love of this city were quite evident when he spoke with such clarity and a sincere heart.

Mayor Joines shares the Peace Torch with Linda Jackson Barnes, his loyal and hard working Chief of Staff for over two decades. Her smile and dedicated approach to her important role in running this city peacefully was very inspiring to us all.

We offered them both some small tokens of our appreciation for welcoming us here and for all that they do for their wonderful city.

Mayor Joines then soulfully joined us in a moment of silence to pray for more peace in the world and to feel our own inner peace which we then can share with all those around us in our day to day lives. We are so grateful to him and his colleagues who work hard every day to improve the conditions of their constituents' lives in order to have a more peaceful and happy community.

Our next stop later in the day was at the City Hall of Mocksville, North Carolina, where we were greeted by Mayor William J. Marklin III.

Salil, the Executive Director of the international Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run,offers Mayor Marklin our Certificate of Appreciation for his decades of service to the Town of Mocksville.

Harita, originally from New Zealand and currently our U.S. Team Captain, starts the women's team afternoon run as she carries the Peace Torch out of Mocksville heading south.

It was a very scenic run today passing by farms and fields and with a deep blue, almost cloudless sky. In contrast to our first week 'on the road' which was quite cold, wet and cloudy, the weather here has been quite refreshing as it has been warming up. There is now quite a bit of new life, as evidenced in the new leaves, blossoms and fields of green, rolling hills.

Amazingly, we happened to park in the driveway of this woman Barbara and her husband Stuart, who by chance came home while we were parked there, only for Barbara to tell us she had seen previous teams at least twice before on the same road. Anyone who knows how fast we travel and how randomly we decide where to stop would understand that these repeated chance encounters are extremely rare! We were touched and marvelled at this astonishing coincidence as they shared our Peace Torch with us and soulfully offered their hopes and dreams for more peace and understanding in the world.

Some of the friendly locals here are so enthusiastic about holding the Peace Torch and offering their encouraging smiles. These kind gentlemen wanted to hold the Peace Torch even while in their cars having lunch.

Having fun on the road as our Mongolian runner, Uugana, prepares to run with the Peace Torch.

Uugana's running form is perfect as she has been with us from day one. It is truly a joy to have her on the women's team after having travelled all the way from her home country of Mongolia, on the other side of the world.

Sweta from Nepal passes the Peace Torch to Preetidutta from New Zealand as they help to spread peace, one person at a time.

After a long, hot run this afternoon the women's team stops at a local Dairy Queen for a sweet 'cool down' treat.

Sweta explains all about the Peace Run as we run through this kind gentleman's town. He then gladly offers the whole women's team ice creams of their choice- the famous 'Blizzard' was the popular choice.

While their their treats were being prepared, more friendly locals took interest in the Peace Run and then proceeded to share the Peace Torch with the team. Again, another incredible and sincere display of 'southern hospitality' here today which has really touched our hearts, (and 'sweet tooths' as well).

This Mexican  buffet style dinner was prepared by some of the men's team in the late afternoon after having run in the morning. Some of the women's team had to enjoy this delicious meal much later in the evening after having eaten all that delicious ice cream from Dairy Queen after their run.

Sweta enjoys some treats on her last day with the team today. She has been with us since we left New York 11 days ago and we are sad that she has to leave us to go back to her home and job in Nepal. She has been a true joy to have on our team, and at the same time she is so grateful to have had this opportunity to experience this section of the United States. She also will be organizing a Peace Run in Nepal next year, which I am sure will be just as successful and uplifting as our Peace Run in this eastern section of the U.S. has been so far.

The sun sets on another peaceful and glorious day of peace, friendship and hospitality as we make our way through North Carolina to South Carolina with grateful hearts.

Torch carried by
Arpan DeAngelo (United States), Harita Davies (New Zealand), Jozsef Dicso (Hungary), Pransukh Marks (United States), Preetidutta Thorpe (New Zealand), Puroga Theobald (Hungary), Salil Wilson (Australia), Sweta Pradhan (Nepal), Uugantsetseg Otgonbayar (Mongolia), Virangini Afzal (United States).  
Arpan DeAngelo, Harita Davies, Preetidutta Thorpe
The torch has travelled 48.0 mi from Winston-Salem, North Carolina to Salisbury, North Carolina.

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