Tag Archives: Miyuki Sese

Intern writes about her experience at Street Roots

September 19, 2008

by Miyuki Sese

The day at Street Roots starts soon after sunrise, sometimes even before then. The scent of coffee fills the office and the chatting among vendors makes for a lively atmosphere.
The phone rings as if it is an alarm clock to wake us up.

Street Roots is here to welcome anyone who needs support. Our crew consists of familiar vendors who have been working for a long time, new travelers who have just arrived in Portland and anyone who needs our help. New faces come and go at every moment.

Street Roots supplies essential human needs such as food, clothes and a bathroom, but also computer access, phone service, a mailing address and the place to visit with friends. In a society where everyone cannot always find those services, this place is a valuable resource.

In the Street Roots drop-in office the vendors prepare to start their day selling the newspaper. They have breakfast, catch-up with each other, and get ready for work.

My favorite thing is to talk with vendors. I can be happy just to see their smile and talk with them. They sometimes ask me about Japanese and how it is spoken. “Kon-niti-wa” (hello), “arigato” (thank you) and “sayonara” (goodbye), seems familiar in the U.S. I am glad to have a small conversation with them in Japanese. On the other hand, they tell me about other states in the United States and other countries where I haven’t been yet, and their stories inspire me to go to the unfamiliar places. Ted Palmer tells me about how his pretty baby is with his happy smile. Mike DeBee talks about politics (I’m not good at it). Cassidy sings the punch line to “Brown chicken, brown cow,” – over and over again. I like to listen to their chatting on random topics; their job, daily life and trouble. The office comes alive in their cheerful good mood. Continue reading

A long way from home

(July 25) Miyuki Sese, Street Roots full-time intern this summer recently traveled to a land far, far away. Sese is from Japan and has been in the states nearly one-year and in Portland for nearly three months. Her adventures recently took her to the annual Rainbow Gathering in Wyoming. Her beautiful story is below.

On the afternoon of June 28, I left Portland for Wyoming with my friends to join the 2008 Rainbow Family of the Living Light (Rainbow Gathering). Not everyone might be familiar with the name. Rainbow Gathering is an annual international camping event, held July 1-7, that anyone can join.

I made up my mind to go there without hesitation. I was just curious about it and wanted to get some strange experiences in the U.S. as a Japanese exchange student. Most of my friends were surprised that I went, but the philosophy of the Rainbow Gathering — liberty, love and peace without violence – attracted me and made me feel I had to grasp the opportunity to learn more about those things. Continue reading

Now you see us…

(July 24) Street Roots highlights the work of artists on the streets who have chronicled their lives through film, poetry and art. Pitchfork Rebellion fights against the Bureau of Land Management’s plan to ramp up logging in Oregon’s forests. One of Street Roots more popular vendors (Roger Gates) is highlighted after his passing this week.

Jay Thiemeyer and Miyuki Sese bring us hard-hitting commentaries from on and off the grid. Street Roots introduces a new and controversial column by Tye Doudy called The Addicts Almanac where he explores his life as a junkie on Portland’s streets.

Street Roots features Green Party Candidate Cynthia McKinney from Georgia and our editorial explores the double standard with shield laws that protect a journalist’s ability to protect their sources and material.

All of this and much more in the new edition of Street Roots coming out tomorrow.

Posted by Israel Bayer