“Yea, but, what’s the purpose, why do I want to sponsor you, do you see what I’m saying?” The woman at the print shop looks me right in the eye as I shift onto my left foot.

“Like what’s the gimmick?” I say as I steal a glance over at Joey.

“Yea, right, what’s the gimmick?” She goes on to tell me about Dianne Sawyer and the show she’s doing tonight dealing with children in Appalachia who drink a lot of Mt. Dew, “they have holes in their teeth, there’s nine teaspoons of sugar in Mt. Dew,” she tells me. I screw up my face thinking about how gross that image is. “So you could do something like that, like get signatures on a petition, something, you know?”

What’s the purpose? The print shop lady pressed us while we waited for 73 pages of our press kit cover letters to be printed. What are you doing this for? Why would you quit your jobs when so many American’s are desperate for jobs, and why are you driving around sight seeing, what’s the bigger purpose? What are you accomplishing?

I told her my parents had asked the same, that Joey’s dad and I had exchanged a few words on the topic, that anyone our age or older had said basically “yea, but why would you do that?” And maybe some of you America in 100 Days fans are wondering the exact same thing. How do you justify something which on the surface seems so self serving and almost wasteful in a way?

We have been feeding lines to our nay saying public: we’re young, we don’t have kids or mortgage payments; we’re at a point in our careers where it makes sense to take a break and see where we can move on to move up. But at this tumultuous time in American history, what is our bigger purpose here? The print shop lady got me thinking… 

President Obama spoke last night in Springfield, IL commemorating Lincoln’s birthday. He spoke about the divisions in America today, about how we need to work as one nation if we want to be the nation that leads in this historic time and through the next century. As I lay in bed sleepily listening to his speech I thought about how our trip will give us a unique insight into our country. This vast land is so huge that one state barely knows its neighbors let alone the other side of the country. As we travel through every state in the contiguous U.S. I believe the values I hold will be tested, the opinions I have will be challenged but overall I will see first hand what this country is all about and why I am proud to live here and love this nation. Obama is right, now more than ever we need to have a strong unified voice. We need to move boldly forward and shake off the misery we are living in now.

As we travel around this summer I think our bigger purpose will be to show Americans through our blogging and videos why America is the land they love. That even in the toughest of times, even through the hardest of moments we are one nation under God indivisible with liberty and justice for all. America is beautiful and it is the home of the free and the brave. 


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