In Birmingham I heard Maya Angelou speak and I was astounded. I knew nothing about her before entering the lecture theatre. I laughed, I cried, I was inspired.
Since then I have bought all 6 of her autobiographical books (I have just learnt the 7th was published last year and have put it on my wish list). I also own "Even the stars look lonesome". They are in my main bookcase in the loungeroom with all books I consider important. Sadly I have not read any of them since moving to New Zealand. I will remedy that this year.
After the conference ended I flew to Detroit and made my way to Chicago where I boarded the California Zephyr to San Francisco. By coincidence my plans next Thursday are to again board the California Zephyr in San Francisco and travel as far as Denver.
There are lots of tributes on Youtube. I managed to find this small example of her inspiration which so affected me back in 1999.
May Maya Rest in Peace and Rise in Glory.