PLSC Civl Rights Pilgrimage: Day 1

The night before. I don’t really consider this to the be the actual beginning of my journal, I've traveled but because of my own personal negative feelings about journaling, I’m going to use this as a warm up. I feel the need to stretch my mind as much as a runner stretches his legs. This trip purpose and I don’t want to forget that, but I feel unready and uneasy. I loveI've traveled throughout Europe alone, with family, with friends, and with people I just met, but thisis different. Cliché? Probably, but I would rather be authentic and cliché than unique but just afaçade. I have only gone on a trip with purpose like this once before, and that was when I went toItaly to visit a WWII death camp. These pre-departure feelings remind me a lot of that trip. I hadnever gone to a death camp before, but I had been to the Holocaust Museums in both Dallas and Washington, DC. I had been to countless WWII museums, and honestly, I can’t remember a time when I didn’t know about the Holocaust. But I wanted to feel it. I wanted to be in the same placethat I had read about. I packed my bags in London last spring, flew to Trieste and planned a tripto Ljubljana, Slovenia to go along with it. After settling into Trieste for a few days, on a rainymorning, I took the local bus out to the south of the city to Risiera di San Sabba. The whole thingfelt surreal, and actually rather fictional. I was alone. The only people there were two workers. Isaid hello to them, but they returned to their office. The site is open-air, so as I walked throughthe building the rain began to pour. As I looked up to the sky where the smoke stack once stood,I began to cry. I don’t consider myself emotional and nothing in particular was special happenedwhile I was there, but the weight of it all came crashing down on me. My expectations for thistrip aren’t grandiose, and to be honest, I don’t plan on bursting out in tears at any point on thistrip. But I hope this trip changes me. I don’t know in what way, but I feel that need for change inmy bones.

Song: Freedom –Beyoncé ft. Kendrick Lamar