Day 14 we had a hilly but beautiful 33 miles and then went to the DUNES (I, for one, was lit).
A friend of mine once told me that “beauty inspires justice.” I honestly never really understood what she was talking about, but as I am riding the coast with absolutely breathtaking views, I think I’m starting to get it. I honestly don’t think the last 2 teams emphasized enough how BEAUTIFUL this ride is. The Oregon coast is stunning and I am in awe of the views we get to see. We have also had some truly beautiful conversations.
If you have been following our blogs, you have read about our conversations with Ray and Chris. While these 2 men impacted us especially, so many people we have spoken to have impacted us with their encouragement and stories. The other day we pulled over at a lookout and I met a man named Albert. What began as a conversation about cycling (he used to race in Portugal- way cooler than us), turned into a conversation about what we can do to prevent minors from getting trapped in the sex trafficking industry.
Albert has a teenage daughter and was astounded when we told him that the average age of a girl entering trafficking is 13. Albert was so grateful for our ride and mission, and I was so grateful for his passion for justice. The beauty of Oregon and powerful conversations motivate me to pursue justice for girls who have been exploited.
I am inspired to restore a messed up system of exploitation of humans, and restore survivors of this injustice to physical and mental health. I am not biking the coast to have a cool fun fact about myself or get in great shape, and if my mind ever shifts to this focus I am QUICKLY humbled; I am biking for justice. Everyday I am reminded of the endless cycle of evil that girls being trafficked experience. As I climb up a hill, praying that around the corner a downhill is coming, only to be disheartened when the hill continues, I think of the girls trapped in sex trafficking who daily pray for rescuing from this evil, only to be disappointed.
I am so thankful for The Refuge and their mission to provide a silver lining for the girls who have been climbing a seemingly never-ending hill. A man we met the other day from Montreal referred to our team as “friends of war.” This fight against sex trafficking and the evil that encompasses it is a war, and I am so thankful to have these 9 girls with me in battle!