Day 6 & 7
Lamese and I went to see the many iconic monuments that make Washington DC very special. We saw the Lincoln Memorial, the White House, the Korean War Memorial and so many more. Unfortunately, the DC rain spoilt my tour of the city.
I had to leave Lamese for Granby, Colorado, to continue with my programme. Lamese wasn't just a tour organizer, we became friends in the few days we spent together. She was my "mama", and was really good at her job. Denver, Colorado is known as the Mile High City, with an elevation of 5332 feet. The welcome I got at the airport was warmer than the air I breathed landing in Denver. Lynn Sywyj and my soon-to-become Papa and Mama Steve and Irene Lawrence of World Denver met me on arrival. "Drink lots of water, lots of water", my hosts kept telling me. The weather in Granby is dry and cold. This weather is exactly same as the one we call Harmattan in Nigeria, usually during the end of the year. If you plan on visiting here, also remember to pack lots of moistures and lip balms.
Steve helped get my luggage, and into a vehicle to Granby. Steve and Irene volunteer with the organization World Denver, to host visitors to the city. I would be meeting Steve and Irene again after my trip to Granby, and will be telling you lots more about this amazing couple.
Ted, also known as Habib, drove me to the Snow Mountain Ranch, while introducing me to the rocky mountains of Colorado. Nature sits on these mountains, sending beauty to all of Colorado. On our way, I saw mountains where mining has been taking place for many years. Before my trip to the US, I visited Mpape, Nigeria, with the Heinrich Boell Foundation. We had gone to see how this low income community had developed in an unsustainable manner, and how the hills were being chipped off for gravel needed for construction. Some hills had totally disappeared, or were on the verge of disappearing. From what I observed in Granby, development in the city and its environs has happened alongside nature. Colorado has learnt from experience how important development should be planned sustainably.
I'm in Granby to be part of AGU Chapman conference, Communicating Climate Science. The conference will bring together scientists, journalists, organizations and academia to discuss both the history and recent advances in understanding climate science, and how this science can best be communicated to policy makers, the media and society.
I look around this beautiful snow mountain area, and see a lot to explore. I take a good breath and head straight to my bed for a well needed rest, and wondering if I'll ever have the time to see this serene mountain area.
My little girl is already asleep after a long flight to Colorado. I'm a mother and an environmental journalist, whose work has gone beyond a passion for journalism. It has become a fight to sustain nature for my daughter, and for many children around the world.