Running into politicians accidentally part 2: Tim Kaine in Bethlehem, PA

As many may know, Senator Tim Kaine has been chosen as Hillary Clinton’s running mate in the 2016 presidential election. Pennsylvania is a swing state, which means that the state population never consistently votes Democratic or Republican year after year. My home state is crucial in this year’s election, and the area that I live in is also an important factor in determining who will win the election. In southeast Pennsylvania, Bethlehem is a city that I have recently volunteered in. I started volunteering in the Hispanic Center of the Lehigh Valley in the senior center. I spend my days feeling useful and improving my Spanish. The second day I volunteered there, I met Tim Kaine.

I heard talk of a senator visiting the center and then saw security outside of the building. After speaking to some clients, I went to use the bathroom. When I reappeared, dozens of reporters with their cameras and booms out piled into the hall. I sat down next to one of the senior citizens and showed her how to access her camera on her cell phone. Soon the kitchen opened for lunch and Tim Kaine was serving it. He was speaking Spanish to the seniors while ladling gravy. I took both my cell phone and the lady’s cell phone to take pictures. Some reporters were in the way of the clients getting their lunch. I sat back down at a table and waited.

Tim Kaine speaking to a constituent.

Sure enough he spoke to all the clients. The woman next to me spoke her mind about politics and advocated for more funding for programs like the one she was a part of. Kaine then stopped at me and shook my hand. We spoke English, because he saw my Casper-like skin color. He asked me if I was a student and I explained that I recently graduated and decided to volunteer as I job hunted. He asked me where I graduated, what I wanted to do, what I studied, if I spoke Spanish… all questions your uncle at a family reunion would ask a recent graduate. Kaine was very kind. One of the older women even kissed him on the cheek.

After he left, I was approached by a local TV station to give an interview in Spanish. I was very nervous being on camera, so I tried my best to answer the questions. I was so excited about it all that I forgot the word “excited” in Spanish. Excitado, in case you were wondering. Here is a video of me shaking his hand quite vigorously. I left in utter shock that now this is the second time in a few months that I accidentally ran into a notable politician. The first one being Bill Clinton.  This is now the fourth politician that I have happened upon unintentionally. I must have a hidden talent.

After Tim Kaine served lunch, he spoke to all the seniors in Spanish.

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