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STORIES FROM THE ROAD


January 12, 1998

RUN-A-ROUND

When I arrived in Blountsville, Florida around 3:30 p.m., I didn't expect that I was going to go through so much run-around in trying to find a place to stay. The reason why I had stopped in town was to try and get in touch with somebody from the prospective Habitat for Humanity affiliate but nobody who I talked to knew about the plans for starting up the affiliate and who was in charge.

I stopped at the police station to see if anybody could refer me either to a church or a place where I could camp out. I got a referral to go see the Methodist minister but when I got there I was told that I had to go see the Baptist minister. The Baptist minister wasn't at the church and I got referred back to the police station by the church secretary.

It turns out that the reason for this run-around was that the local churches had set money aside in a fund to give travelers assistance but the fund was tapped out. The person who I had first talked to at the police station didn't know this. I had spent well over an hour in town and I sort of wished somebody would have told me this before.

My only recourse was to get back on the road heading eastward and I hoped to get to the next town before it got too dark to see. There was no place to camp out in the area because I was in the swampy flood plain of the Appalachicola River. I rode over the three mile long narrow two-laned bridge as fast as I could dodging what traffic there was. In the middle of the bridge, I crossed into Calhoun County and back into the Eastern Time Zone.

When I got into Bristol just before dusk, I stopped at the county sheriff's office. After about two hours, the dispatcher was able to get hold of the local Baptist minister. Pastor Wentworth came to the jail and offered to get me a room at the local motel instead of letting me stay at the church for the night.




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