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Entries from September 2008

September 02, 2008

Rick Steves' mission to Iran

We receive a lot of great mail here at KCTS 9--some of it by snail mail, and some by e-mail. This letter arrived in the post over the summer from Anita Bundy in Victoria, and I wanted to share a little bit of it with you. She starts:

My husband and I first pledged while watching Upstairs, Downstairs in Toronto. Suddenly, he left the room, took the phone, and said "Watching your face enjoying the program, I had to phone and pledge." ... I am now nearly 90. ... As long as I can see, I'll be watching.

Okay, I must admit that I remember watching Upstairs, Downstairs as a little kid and not understanding it one bit. (I'm pretty sure we had a kids' book with a similar title and it threw me way off.) But Anita also included a note about Rick Steves, and I can certainly identify with it--and the overall thought behind her letter. Here's part that note:

I wondered how long you'd be satisfied to gallop around Europe. I tune in every night. I cannot go to any of those countries and so enjoy your quick wit & marvelous photography vicariously--over and over and over. I never tire of it.

But--I cannot tell you how happy I was that you went to Iran. That took real courage, wisdom and understanding that somehow, somebody needs to realize that if we don't find a way to love our enemies (well, that might be a bit extreme) but to at least understand them. Wars will go on and we'll all be dead. Gandhi said "An eye for an eye and the whole world will be blind."

I write this with hope, and to thank you for attempting it alone, to show the way. Dare to be a Daniel, we learned in Sunday school.

Rick is producing a one-hour special on his trip that will air in January, but you can hear more about the journey--and how he came to be making this pilgrimage, what else he's got on his plate, and more--this Friday night at 7:30 on Conversations at KCTS 9. We'll see you then.