Chapter three of the Appalachia Rising saga unfolded today in the Hart Senate Office Building. But first, let’s jump back to how I got there. If anything, it’ll paint the picture of life amidst rush hour as a DC res.

I leave the house a bit before 8:45 a.m. and speedily walk down the street towards the Columbia Heights metro station. As I step on the escalator, I have two choices: ride down on the right side or walk down the left side, thus getting me into the subway faster. I chose the later option. If you’re ever entering or leaving the DC subway, know that it is custom to ride on the right and walk on the left of an escalator. Otherwise, people get mad. Especially at peak rush hour times.

After putting some much-needed funds on my SmarTrip card, I ascend onto the platform aiming for Chinatown, the stop in which I will switch to the redline and shoot for the Judiciary Square stop.

When the car arrives, I pile on with everyone. Personal space doesn’t really exist on the metro during rush hour. But I get on anyway and finally arrive at Chinatown where I run around in a hurry because I realize I’m on the wrong side of the platform for Judiciary Square. Sometimes I surprise myself at how much I fit into city life. I get impatient and I sometimes have no trouble cutting people off or walking in front of them. I also walk fast a lot. Hmm.. is that bad?

Anyway, after all this craziness, I arrive in the office building and meet up with my group. We have a 10 a.m. meeting scheduled with a staffer from George Voinovich’s office. The staffer works on energy issues and some of the folks in the meeting with me know him. In fact, they know him well enough to know that his wife just had a baby and know to ask him about it at the beginning of the meeting. Props for the whole building a rapport thing! With me is a mother from Huntington, Wva. and her daughter and other folks who work at NGOs like me. The topic of discussion is the Appalachia Restoration Act. Basically it would define fill material so that coal cannot be dumped into waterways. Lobbying can either be fun or stressful. Today it was enjoyable. Since I’m from Ohio, I brought the constituency to the meeting. I emphasized that every environmental issue is really a human issue and that this was the perfect example. This bill would protect the drinking, bathing, etc. water of the people of Appalachia.

Here’s some information on taking action on this act: I Heart Mountains! Please please please take some action. Write a letter, draw a picture, say some prayers, and totally CALL. Pick up yo damn phone and CALL!

Here are some other random things I’ve found of interest today:

Shane Claiborne and the President of Goshen College talk about Jesus and patriotism.

Louisville Coal Ash Hearing

I went to a Bread and Puppet show tonight!

I’ve been listening to the Soil and the Sun.

Obama and Jesus.