200 day, 3,000 mile journey to connect face-to-face with people brings Michigan man to Baldwyn
It’s all about conversation, up close and personal. Chris Andrews lived the last four years in Scotland finishing his degrees in Spanish and Business Management at the University of St. Andrews. Northern Michigan is where he calls home. About a year and a half ago, Andrews began thinking about the issue of the way everyone interacts and communicates. He is not condemning technology, but communication has certainly changed in the last twenty years as a result of it.
“I started observing my own and others behavior, the device is there . . . easy, it’s in your pocket,” Andrews said. “I saw how much I was losing sight of connecting with people around me.”
Andrews began his journey on August 8, 2016 outside of Washington D.C. at Fairfield Beach. With a cart full of essential supplies, he began walking one step at a time across American to experience the power of face-to-face conversations with people spanning east to west.
“Interacting is sometimes scary or not easy,” Andrews said. “It can be unpredictable, not planned. But it is fulfilling to get to know people for who they really are.”
Andrews’ intent is to grab people’s attention and use that journey as a bugle for the message; to maintain our ability to effectively interact face-to-face. He wants to encourage people to go out and talk in the real world . . . have a face-to-face conversation and enjoy the benefits of it.
While in Baldwyn, Andrews has met some amazing people. He has toured the city, spent the night in a comfortable bed, taken soothing hot showers and talked to many locals. His stay in Baldwyn has expanded due to one of the wheels on his cart needing repairs. A local business has fixed the problem and Andrews will continue his journey soon.
Andrews is best friends with Lee Gordon, who has roots planted deep in Baldwyn. M. Gordon was Lee’s grandfather and played a major part in the success of Baldwyn’s growth and business successes.
Mr. Gordon was a Jewish immigrant from Russia. He and his wife and their son, Phil, lived in Baldwyn. Phil left Baldwyn and is a physician in Bethesda, Maryland. Mr. M. Gordon and his wife passed away in Baldwyn.
“I heard about Baldwyn from Lee and wanted to see where his family had lived, worked and attended school,” Andrews said. “Everywhere I have gone and everyone I have met have displayed true southern hospitality.”
The next town on Andrews list is Oxford. He hopes to reach out to young Oxford students at schools and make an impact in the way they communicate. After leaving Oxford he heads to Clarksdale, across the river to Helena, Arkansas and will stop in Hot Springs to recharge and experience the spa atmosphere Hot Springs is famous for. One of his sponsors, Mountain Valley Water is based in Hot Springs.
Thanksgiving will be spent in Lubbock, Texas. Andrews’ family will meet him there to spend quality family time together. Andrews is looking forward to his girlfriend flying in from Scotland to spend Christmas in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The journey will end in Los Angeles, California.
“I urge everyone to go out in your community or where you travel to and make face-to-face connections. The random encounters will make your days and weeks more enjoyable,” Andrews said. “You never know where the genuine connections will take you in life.”
To follow Andrews’ journey, Let’s Talk – Walk Across America, follow him at https:/www.facebook.com/LetsTalkUsaProject/