A Real Eye Opener

Aloha Everyone!

It's me, Martin. Hope everyone is doing well. Today was definitely a real eye opener, hence the title.

Today, I rode in Mo's care with Kristeme, Makena, and Teresa. There was "A lot of Hawaii in that car." haha. I was appointed co-pilot with the directions. At one point during the ride, I had the GPS, Mo's phone, and paper directions. It was fun. I will leave it at that.

Our first place we went to was Pho 87 in Chinatown. I was excited because back in Hawaii, I ate Pho, which is Vietnamese soup with rice noodles, almost once a week. It makes me feel warm inside, both physically and emotionally because me and my family always had Pho back in Philadelphia. It was fun to be able to sit down with everyone in a place I was very used to and was able to tell other's what they may like. It was also fun to see everyone trying new and different foods. We also then met Fr. Ted, who was very warm in his greetings to everyone as we introduced ourselves. He took time to find some kind of common ground to agree on. It was a great meal.

After that, we went over to St. Ann's Church and heard Pahn(?) speak about his journey to get to where he was today. He was actually the owner of Pho87. It is crazy because he was telling us about the hardship he and his people had to go through to come to the United States. Now, I have done a relative amount of traveling and I have filled out my own immigration papers. I have seen the box for "Refugee" on there, yet I never associated that box with anyone and what it take, what that person has to go through to be able to reside in a country. It really opened my eyes of how everyone has a story. My life has been a rose garden compared to some people. I am a college student who is trying to financially support myself while being in school, and I will say that I have complained a lot. In retrospect, I do not see why I was complaining because I have been greatly blessed to be where I am. I am blessed to have all the opportunities I have had. It really made me appreciative of what I have, and where I have come from. In addition, it has made me really respectful to others because everyone has a story. It was a very humbling experience to just hear about him and his struggles.

Once we left St. Ann's we migrated to downtown Los Angeles. I would imagine it was the business district. There were tall buildings and a whole bunch of businesses. It reminded me of Chinatown in Honolulu. The streets were tiny and the buildings were huge. As we continued on down the road, we passed a few stoplights, then we approached this large group of people, and a natural inclination was to be nosy. We rolled down our windows and we tried to see what was going on. Before we got to this point, Mo mentioned that we would see when we get to Skid Road, and after seeing the movie set, i promise you, less that 100 feet away, across the corner, Skid Road began. It really made me realize that most, if not all of these people who will see this movie, will never realize what was behind the director's back. It was something that just broke me back to reality. It just hurt me a little.

It's getting late, I'll let you all know about the Midnight Mission Experience in the Morning!

Good night everyone!

-Martin Joseph Moore III
Chaminade University of Honolulu


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