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  • Writer's pictureLeah Jones

Distraction: San Francisco, Summer 1996

I found the official journal I wrote for my grant the summer of 1996. I worked for the Overseas Development Network on a project called Bike-Aid. Bike-Aid is now with Global Exchange and ODN is now JustAct.

Here are a few things I wrote that summer:

June 8, 1996 I told her (my supervisor, Rosemarie King) about all of the religion/environment information we’d come across at work. I told her the best book was called Environment and Jewish Life.

June 11, 1996 Ok–so then the work I did today. I made phone calls for about FIVE CITIES on the Portland route. I got some positive feedback–a nice change–from the Boy Scout’s Director. And I worked on getting information from the old route journals for the new route book. I gathered from the ’93 and ’94 Portland routes. And that was pretty much my day. Quite full, but it looks meaningless on paper.

June 12, 1996 I did-however-call James (my mentor from Millikin). He returned my phone call tonight and tomorrow afternoon he is going to stop by my office. That basics of the conversation were–my job, the mission area, my housing situation, financial district vs. Mission on social life, conversing on a regular basis and the letter.

James shared my feeling that the letter was worded in a negative light of me. It told how I felt it treated me like I was 5. Yes, the office needed my address and phone number, but that could have been directed at me, rather than through James.

We were also both surprised by the Pilot Program. First we’d heard of it. So–we will work to satisfy Millikin it its quest of the unknown.

June 15, 1996 About the job, that things are getting better there. When someone wants me to do something they are less apologetic about it. And how socially things are getting worse. Real life is not as easy as it is supposed to be. I can’t figure out how to meet people in a non-school environment.

June 18, 1996 I am feeling much better about staying here the rest of the summer. For a few days I was very ready to go home, but home wouldn’t be much better because it wouldn’t be Millikin.


August 1, 1996 What advice would you give to the next intern in your shoes?

  1. Be courageous.

  2. Be prepared to be persistant

  3. Do Not Be Afraid of Anything

  4. Let the shit roll off your back

  5. Don’t take “it” personally

August 3, 1996 Well now I’m home and it is very different. Almost like I’d never left.

But thank god I did…

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