2017 Volunteered at Mamma Jamma

      Waking up at 5:30 a.m. had become a weekly routine for each of us. With Trey, Prem, and Bailey in the car, we started our hour long drive towards Martindale/Staples. Running on a few hours of sleep, a wide array of alternative rock music got us in the perfect mood to cheer on a few hundred riders at the Mamma Jamma Charity Ride. We were greeted only by cheery faces and unbridled enthusiasm. Our rest stop was in a small town called Staples, where we prepared hand-made PB&J sandwiches, fig newtons, pickle juice, and nuun tablets. Seeing people see food and energy with relief made each and every one of us feel appreciated. I saw myself as part of a larger cancer-fighting community; numerous people asked us about our experiences with Texas 4000 thus far. As they parted ways towards the finish line, we made a tunnel of support for them to go through, which they were so happy about.

            As our volunteering shift ended and the last few cyclists found their way to our rest stop, I began my introspection. Oh how many people I had met, how many stories had I heard… Among the many cyclists, there were numerous survivors. They gave me so much Hope. Furthermore, I learned so much about a few of my 2017 teammates and our bond was bolstered on a more personal level. All in all, I’m so appreciative of my time with Texas 4000 and this volunteering experience stands as a testament. #WeAre2017

Written by: Amar Sheth