It’s a quiet day in southern California. The sky is grey with the June gloom that came right on schedule a week ago. It sounds absolutely miserable to call it that, all it really does is turn the totally blue sky normal here into the alabama late spring rain feeling without the storm. It’s rather like Narnia really — always overcast, never thunderstorm. But I love it for all that it is. The overwhelming truth is, I’ve actually come to love this world I live in — over 2,000 miles away from the place of my adolescence. and the closer I come to leaving it, the graduation goggles strap themselves on and I only remember the best parts. I do love summertime in SoCal. I really do.
Today I wanted to write something for this new generation I have grown up with. I have become a keen observer of our time recently — having nothing better to do besides write a book and cook — I am inspired by the people around the world. I guess we’re coming to the time, people in our mid twenties, where we’re coming into our own. Most of my peers have graduated college and many are in grad school, a few have started making their way out into the professional world and I am stunned and challenged by their amazing skills, creativity, and guts. I watch from a distance as they circulate around the country and globe, and as our tiny Alabama city is drained of old life and is being revitalized by a spirit of entrepreneurial excellence. I think what amazes me the most is that many of the people that are changing the pace of a nation are doing it almost completely in their free-time. People working industrious jobs by day counseling, teaching, heavy lifting, serving, spend their weekend writing music, painting, baking, cooking, gardening and talking. The ideas that fill their minds and are expressed by incredible independent forms are intricate and beautiful.
A generation that was expected to fail. Older generations say that our entire peer group was born into a “give-me” mindset with no proper ideas of our own and the expectation to have everything from school to life handed to us with no work on our part — to that I say, you’re interpreting us wrong, though there are some out there that fit such a bill. The generation I know is a generation inspired by warm colors, designs and patterns. They dream in pale greens, earthy browns, bright teal and corals. They work long hard hours at jobs that suit them, they work to pay what bills they can and in the mean time they are idealizing a better future. Small coffee shops and restaurants are bursting onto the scene so quickly the tide can hardly keep up; and with them a tidal wave of art, music, hand-made quilts and blankets and baked goods made from family recipes — their ever secret ingredients enchantingly evading capture. Benefits being hosted by artists for doctors to go to school, art walks and farmers markets connecting families, farmers, artists, journalists, and a nation. There is no decline in the grassroots of America, the same sorts of people who immigrated here in ages past with their big ideas for a nation of their own fill our streets, homes, shops, pubs and garages as they always have.
It is you — you are the inspiring ones — you are the ones taking humanity back to the beautiful basics of honest heartfelt appreciation for each other — you are the ones and it is your time. Thank goodness for this generation and for the bright colors it will leave behind it on the pages of history.
It is good to know you.