Posted on January 18, 2013 by ashley

Thursday morning’s temperature barely hovered above 10 degrees Fahrenheit, but that didn’t stop this Decorah Walking School Bus!

Erika Randall, AmeriCorps Service Member for the Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative (FFI) and I (Ashley Christensen, Safe Routes to School Liaison for FFI) joined a Decorah Walking School Bus on a brisk Thursday morning this week. As soon as I stepped outside to meet Erika, I had to step right back inside to rethink my now frozen hairstyle; going outside with wet hair in these temperatures no longer seemed like such a good idea. After my best effort in trying to shove my frozen head of icicles under a stocking cap, it was off to meet Erika I went, and onward to the Walking School Bus we were!

Once “on the bus”, we joined two Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) volunteers, George and Joann Hagen, and about 10 children. Though it was bitterly cold, you never would have guessed it if you didn’t see snow pants and patches of snow around. It was as if these kids were just too darn busy talking and having fun with their neighborhood friends to even notice the sharp bite in the air. I, on the other hand, was obviously not a seasoned Walking School Bus veteran, with fingers so cold I thought they were going to shatter each time I dared to snap a picture (which wasn’t often) and a jaw bone so chilled to the core I could barely form words. For an outdoor enthusiast who absolutely loves winter time, I must admit I am nowhere near as tough as this group of smiling and laughing elementary kids!

Simply put, I was in awe of the dedication of this Walking School Bus. It is UNSTOPPABLE! Nothing seems to get in the way of this troop, not even hair-freezing, finger-shattering, bone-chilling temperatures. And that, my friends, is what keeps me motivated each day. To see our Northeast Iowa Walking School Buses trek on and genuinely enjoy doing so is just one of the many great driving forces behind why FFI efforts and victories are and will continue to be UNSTOPPABLE, too.

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