Kamal Obeid

Kamal Obeid holds a Master’s Degree in Civil and Structural Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. He has been a practicing engineer for the last 30 years, a licensed structural engineer for the last 25 years. He has designed and retrofitted numerous structural steel-frame buildings.

I started my day in Rochester with writing for the previous blog post.  Then I had two radio interviews, one for WELW in Cleveland and one for the Hamilton College station in Clinton, NY.  I was finally out on the the canla tail and onto the road into Rochester by about 10:30 am.

After writing about the Erie Canal bike path yesterday, I spent the next several hours in the city of Rochester traffic!  I gave DVD’s to, in order: 
-       a city patrol officer
-       a woman on the street (she looked like she needed something to refresh her perspective on the day) 
-       a Democrat and Chronicle newspaper editor
-       the Monroe county sheriff’s office for the sheriff
-       a friendly deputy sheriff
-        city police patrol officer for the police chief 
-       the patrol officer who took the DVD to give to the sheriff 
-       an employee of the Rochester Business Alliance
-       a vendor selling food on the street
-       a woman passing by who looked both shocked and fascinated by our conversation
-       three city transit workers – all were interested, one was also a volunteer firefighter
-       a convenience store employee
-       a lieutenant with the city of Rochester fire department, Truck 4, who knew about WTC 7, and said that at his station they’d watched a few documentaries about the forensic evidence and that there were some good points made in those documentaries…and also that there were still differing opinions among the firefighters in the station
-       a man on the street who had asked me, “Why do you look so happy? It is your birthday or something? I never see anybody look so happy.”  I told him that I am content, and maybe that's why I look happy.

I arrived on the east side of Rochester by about 2 pm, ready to pick up new business cards and ride east.  It turned out that the business cards were at the FedEx branch in the city.  I was tired by then and not happy about riding two and a half miles west in urban traffic back into the city.  Each part of the country has it’s own challenges on the road.  North Dakota has intense winds…Rochester has multiple copy shop locations.  I did my best to keep calm.  On the ride back into and out of the city, I gave DVDs to:
-       four young men for the bus, on who said to me, “You can’t just go around telling people that you rode your bike across the country when you don’t have any proof.”
-       a firefighter at the city of Rochester Fire and Rescue station who hadn't yet heard anything about the forensic evidence
-       a FedEx copy shop employee (I returned to the first copy shop where I’d previously nearly lost my temper, because I wanted to leave the city in a friendly and positive spirit)

To make sense of the lists above for readers, I want to give information to people in positions of authority in each community, and I also want to give information to people who will talk about it to other people in their community, so I respond to curiosity and to friendly comments.

I was already tired from the urban riding by the time I got to the Erie Canal trail.  A fellow cyclist joined me for conversation while we rode for about ten miles.  I gave him a DVD.

I was on my own for another 25 miles, very tired.  I rode past the towns of Pittsord, Fairport, Macedon and Palmyra without stopping.  I gave a DVD to two women on the trail who asked about my travels.  

I made it to Newark, NY, just as the trail was getting too dark to see.  The brother of a friend who lives in Manhattan picked me up and took me to his house in Geneva – he’ll give me a ride back to Newark in the morning.  I appreciate being in relaxed, friendly and supportive company.



10/19/2012 6:53pm

Wow, Rena! You are SO almost there!!! I'd like to know where I can tell friends in NYC where they can be to welcome you as you arrive in NYC. Love, Shar

Wibren Visser
10/22/2012 10:49am

Great work! I hope that New York gives you a warm welcome. You most certainly deserved it!

10/25/2012 1:08pm

Hey Wibren, There will be a Brooklyn reception and a Manhattan one. I offered to throw a party for Rena when she got here, but my friends have already achieved this, so I will merely attend. I may be having a screening of "Lethal Injection: The Story of Vaccination" for October ~ Vaccine Injury Awareness Month (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7hITYIT02rA) just prior to Rena's reception or on the Saturday before when Cindy Sheehan will be in town, not sure yet. Sounds like you do not live in NYC, but YES, we will give Rena a very warm reception. Can't wait to shake her hand. :) Sallie


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