Total Pageviews

Sunday, November 18, 2012


It's been a reflective week.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012: Speak up!

 A fare hike is in the works, again. The MTA wants public feedback on proposed fare increases on subways and buses. One of the public hearings was held at Baruch College. I attended. Not prepared, I signed up to speak. I also wanted to write about the hearing for I must admit I wasn't feeling my best that day (I haven't been feeling my best for the past three weeks), and had no intention to speak to anyone. Before I knew it, someone took my yellow ticket and my name was called. As I got to the podium, my right hand trembled. Looking at the faces of MTA board reps was intimidating for me. What would they think of my thoughts about the proposed fare hikes? I introduced myself and began talking. I thanked transit workers for their hard work in getting our system back and running after hurricane Sandy. I expressed the hardship it would be for all of us with paying higher fares, especially now with so many people unemployed and homeless due to Sandy. I also expressed concern over the B38 bus and their regular versus limited bus service. I was surprised I had their attention and finished before my three minutes were up.

Moments later as I was jotting down some notes for my story, I hear "Dara K. Fulton." It was none other than my friend and PIX11 news reporter, Greg Mocker. We said our hellos and discussed the hearing. Next minute I know, he was giving me a mic and the camera was one us. "I'm not ready for this" I shyly said to Mocker. He replied, "Oh come on Dara K. Fulton, it's not like you haven't done this before." I laughed and said "Okay, no problem." Here's our discussion which was later aired on PIX 11 news that night:

Here's my story about the hearing:

It was great to see Mocker. He encouraged me to continue to speak up and to stay on the trail. That made my night.

Sunday, November 18, 2012: Post hurricane Sandy-Coney Island

I went to Coney Island today. It's one of the places I go to when I need to reflect. However, this time is different. It's been two weeks since hurricane Sandy hit NYC and her presence is still felt throughout the boroughs. Coney Island is just one of the many badly hit areas. I had to see for myself how it was affected. When I got off the F train at Stillwell Ave, it was quiet. This is a station that's always bustling with people. Very few people were out and about, many speaking quietly. I felt sadness while passing by the now closed stores inside the station, including the Dunkin Donuts I usually go to. I quickly noticed  the line along the "Coney Island" sign on a building's wall. That line is where the water rose to during the hurricane. A reality of how powerful Sandy was, and the amount of flooding Coney Island endured.

I walked along the boardwalk and an eeriness was felt. There were people walking, bike riding, some pushing baby strollers, but quiet. Parts of the boardwalk is broken with small piles of sand, and huge shovels left on the beach. Some people were walking along the shoreline taking pictures, some stood on the boardwalk making "wow" sounds. The sun was beautiful, as always. A sign of hope I guess. I sat by the walkway I usually go to reflect. I can see why it's closed off. I almost cried seeing how much damage was left behind. I thought of the residents who live in the area. I wondered how they are coping with Sandy's aftermath. I hope their power was restored and life goes back to normal for them. Sadly for some that won't be the case. Many lost their homes during this hurricane. I hope to help the victims of Sandy in one way or another.


Besides watching how Sandy left things and lives broken, I've been feeling broken too. My brokenness has nothing to do with the hurricane. It has to do with every aspect of my life as it is. For the first time I am letting go of something that is very important to me. I decided not to attend grad school. This is a difficult decision, because it's something I've wanted for some time. Some may think I'm giving up, be disappointed or even judge me. But I know putting grad school on hold is best for me at this time. There are other factors to why I feel broken. Too many things to get into here. One thing I do know is I'm keeping an open mind and heart. I surrender myself to God. My life is in a transitional phrase. It's an awkward experience one I can't explain. I just have to go with the flow.
"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures, he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul, he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake." Psalm 23:1-3

Here's a video of my reflection at Coney Island:

No comments:

Post a Comment