Greetings From Cresson

It’s the end of day 5 and I’ve been relaxing and enjoying the overwhelming hospitality and generousity of Sister Nancy and  everyone else at Mount Aloysius College. I’m not sure about the Aloysius part yet but MOUNT is definitely a very fitting name for this place. Yesterday’s walk was much longer – 25 miles compared to 15 today – but man are there some serious hills out here. Tomorow I’ll have the pleasure of getting my day started with 12% incline hill that goes up over 2,000 feet in elevation. It’ll be nice to get it oout of the way early though and I’m told that after that it’s pretty much down hill all the way to Holidaysburg.

The first couple days have been pretty long and exhausting but I’ve gotten through them with fairly minimal damage to my body, I think, I hope. So far I only have 2 blisters and I got them just within the past day or two. It has definitely been physically challenging, but it’s been mentally challenging too, more so than I think I anticipated. It was definitely much better on day one when I was walking with people. It helps pass the time better and makes things more enjoyable. I’ve really had to push myself towards the ends of my walks the first couple days. Yesterday I got some added motivation in the way of an inpending storm -it thundered for about the last 6 miles of my walk but I managed to finish before it started raining much.

I’ve met a lot of really wonderful, caring, and generous people while I’ve been walking, who have really lifted my spirits and given me much hope and optimisim. Hopefully I’ll have more time to spend on a computer later and will be able to fill you guys in on some of the stories and such, but right now I’m pretty tired and need to get some rest -  walking over 100 miles in 5 days has a way of tuckering a person out.

Thank you all for your continued support. Knowing that people are interest and care about what I’m doing gives me motivition to keep going even when I feel like I can’t take another step. Good night and happy walking.

Adam

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About adambrok

My name is Adam Brok. I am a recent graduate of DePauw University, a small liberal arts school in Greencastle, IN, where I was a Philosophy major and Jewish Studies minor. I am also a proud Pittsburgher. I come from a family and environment where helping people in need was just what you did. If you came across a friend, neighbor, or even a complete stranger that was in need of help, you stopped and did what you could to help. It was just as simple as that. As I grew and moved on to college I continued to help where I could. I volunteered as a student friend at a local elementary school where I served as a mentor and tutor to a kindergartner named Jordan and worked with a local church to help run their non-food pantry (where we supplied members of the community on food stamps with essentials like soap, toothpaste, detergent, etc, that cannot be purchased with food stamps). During the summers after my sophomore and junior years respectfully, I volunteered at the University of Pittsburgh Legal Clinic and The Pittsburgh Refugee and Immigration Assistance Center. I also was fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend the spring semester of my junior year in Philadelphia where I was a social work/legal intern in the Juvenile Special Defense Unit of the Defender Association of Philadelphia. It was during this semester in Philadelphia that I became really passionate about the issues of hunger and homelessness. It was impossible to walk around downtown Philly for more than ten minutes without seeing someone laying on the sidewalk or sitting in dirty clothes on a park bench asking for food and money. It was a scene I just couldn't get comfortable with seeing. Here I was a young college student without much money of my own, yet I had an apartment I slept in each night and food to wake up to each morning. Why should I be so fortunate and not the guy that slept on the sewer grate every night down the block from my bare, but warm apartment. That is when I decided that I needed to something, something much more and much greater than what I had done in the past. Being an avid exerciser and enjoying taking on physical challenges, I decided that I would walk from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia to raise money and awareness for the hungry and homeless.
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15 Responses to Greetings From Cresson

  1. Phil Heyde says:

    Great to read your blog and about you on the DePauw website. You are an exceptional young man. I trust the remainder of the hike will be as wonderful as the start. Oh, I posted the article about you on my FB page. I think people should know about you!

    Phil

    P!

  2. Luke F. says:

    Hey Adam,

    My name is Luke and I am a student at “The Mount (Mount Aloysius College).” An email was sent to all of the students, faculty and staff about your journey. I am glad to see that Sister Nancy and the rest of The Mount was hospitable to you and you were able to take a rest along your long journey. As well, I’m sure that you already know that what you are doing is quite inspiring! I just wanted to let you know that you will be in my, as well as, our campus community’s prayers. Good luck in all that you do and God Bless you!

    Luke

    • adambrok says:

      Luke,

      Thanks so much for your kind words and prayers. You go to school at a very special place and it was an honor to be able to experience it even for a little while. Go Steelers.

      Adam

  3. Luke F. says:

    P.s. I’m also a Proud Pittsburgher. I live about 20 miles south of the Burgh. Also, I know exactly what you mean when you said “I come from a family and environment where helping people in need was just what you did. If you came across a friend, neighbor, or even a complete stranger that was in need of help, you stopped and did what you could to help. It was just as simple as that.” .. Maybe it’s just a Pittsburgh thing haha

  4. Peggy Bennett says:

    Dear Adam,
    Please let me know when you are on Route 22 east heading toward Huntingdon.
    I would like to get you food and give you a donation.
    Thanks.
    Sincerely,
    Peggy

    • adambrok says:

      Peggy,

      Thank you so much for kindness and generousity. Unfortunately this is the first time in a while that I have been able to get on the interenet so I was not able to read your message until now. Although it is too late for me and my stomach to benefit from your generousity (and trust me we would have made quick work of any food that came our way) if you would still be willing to make a donation (either a monetary or food donation) to the Food Bank of Central PA, or perhaps more simply, right to the food pantry in Huntingdon I can assure you would benefit someone much more in need than myself. Here is their address and phone number:
      5 Mifflin Street
      Huntingdon, PA 16652
      (814) 641-0466
      Once I again I am very sorry that I was not able to meet you on my way to Huntingdon and want to thank for your incredible show of generosity. Perhaps we will get another opportunity to meet some day.

      Sincerely,
      Adam

  5. lori and andrew stuart says:

    Adam….
    “Barukh atah Adonai Eloheynu Melekh ha’olam….”Blessed are you, O Lord our God, King of the universe.” And truly the King over the route from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia…. :) In the Sidra this past Shabbat I read in Deuteronomy 13:4…”You shall walk after the Lord your God and revere none but Him; observe His commandments alone, and heed only His orders; worship none but Him and hold fast to Him.” As soon as I saw the word ‘walk’, I paused thinking of you, Adam and I lifted a prayer to Adonai for you. As you continue to walk this journey of worship may you find the richness of His Word beckoning you along this most honorable path . In Psalm 121, “I turn my eyes to the mountains; from where will my help come? My help comes from the Lord, Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot give way; your guardian will not slumber; See, the guardian of Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps! The Lord is your guardian, the Lord is your protection at your right hand.
    By day the sun will not strike you, nor the moon by night. The Lord will guard you from all harm; He will guard your life. The Lord will guard your going and coming now and forever.” In Psalm 146: 5-7 “Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God, Maker of heaven and earth, the sea and all that is in them; who keeps faith forever; who secures justice for those who are wronged, gives food to the hungry.” And one more….. “Micah 6:8 “He has told you, O man, what is good, And what the Lord requires of you: Only to do justice and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God; then will your name achieve wisdom.”
    Celebrating His Word and staying in awe as you walk the walk…. Mighty is the King of the universe, He is Elohim (God supreme) El Shaddai (the Almighty), Adonai Tzva’ot (the Lord of Hosts) ha Kadosh (the Holy One) Av haRahamim (Father of mercies)…..
    Splashes of joy, Adam, from your neigbors from Glenfield, lori and andrew

    • adambrok says:

      Lori,

      It’s so wonderful to hear from you. This is beautiful. Thank you so much. Not much longer now before I’m back to the neighborhood, at least for a short while. Thanks again and see you soon.

      Adam

  6. Taylor Cantril says:

    Press onward my good friend. I’m amazed by your mental and physical stamina. Know that people are thinking of you as you walk. I was even forwarding your posts to my family members back home while I stayed in a cabin in Colorado. As for walking solo, sing songs, count breaths, learn the trees, perfect your dancewalks, write poetry for nomads, or imagine how the roadside landscapes are shaped by the movements of wind, water, man, or tectonic and seismic events. Those are some of the things I do when I walk to occupy and refresh my mind, so I thought maybe you’d enjoy them too. And whistling, I really like that one when I have the breath for it. Humming works too, a little subtler. But you don’t need my suggestions, I trust you’re already finding your own ways to lift your spirits through each step. You’re certainly lifting many of ours. Well wishes and and a round of snaps from Kansas City! Peace, Taylor

    • adambrok says:

      Taylor,

      These all sound like such great ideas I’m not sure which one to try first. Perhaps attepmting to resovlve this dillema will be in of itself the solution to how to occupy my time. Thanks so much for the well wishes and snaps, they are certainly much appreciated. I’ll let you know how these time occupying tactics work out for me.

      Adam

  7. Rabbi Aaron Bisno says:

    Adam -
    I am eagerly following your journey… I am inspired by your courage and character and gumption! Know I’m pulling for you (or pushing you, as it were, with strong gusts of encouragement from the west)! Keep up the pace and the faith… and stay strong and safe!
    - Aaron
    ps Your example and enthusiasm for this significant cause have prompted me to support your walk. Feels good. I hope many others will follow your lead!!

    • adambrok says:

      Rabbi Bisno,

      It’s so great hearing from you. Thank you so much for your words of encouragment and support. Reading this now certainly explains that strong surge I was feeling (coming from the west) as I was walking over that mountain into Millerstown last Friday. It definitely makes a difference knowing that I have so many people that care about me and what I’m doing. Thanks again and see you soon.

      Adam

  8. Nathan says:

    Adam – love your story and efforts. I’m a DPU ’03 grad working in Indy on homelessness issues at School on Wheels (if you need an official organization! :)). Two people recently finished walks also and raised tons of awareness and funds using twitter and facebook.

    http://www.zachtracker.com

    http://meetmehalfway.jimmywayne.com/

    Good luck and let us know if there’s anything we can do to help!!! (nathan@indysow.org)

    • adambrok says:

      Nathan,

      Thanks so much for tip and resources. I would definitely like to talk more with you about your work/organization after I get done with the walk and have more time. Go Tigers (lame I know but I felt compelled).

      Adam

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