Sticky bowls and glasses from the night's teenage party await washing. The towels hang over the dock rails, saturated by the night's dew; and the socks and shirts lay scattered, not carelessly but freely, in the confidence that they will be there when their young owners awaken and seek them. The birds chirp over this cloudy summer morning, with so much to accomplish as the light hours of their Nordic home reduce. Contrary to our fantasy that nature is always in the now, the birds' primary concern is the future.
My island home is inhabited by the young who are beginning to awaken after the late night. What will I tell them about this new day? How can I hide my sadness that youth have murdered youth, and that man seems to be devouring himself? How can I hide my dread that humans seem to be abandoning the search for truth in favor of lies construed as new truths by fictitious tribes that grow further apart? Where can I find the courage to face this new day in a way that gives my children and their friends a sense of future they would like to live with?
Bastille Day itself was a bloody time, as was the time that preceded it, and the time that came after it. When people in Nice looked into the skies at the fireworks, they looked up beyond those times to the ideals that arose out of that day, and changed the standards we live by forever. We don't always live up to them, in fact, man and his governments offend them everyday, but they are there and they are certainly worth living for. There is meaning in liberty and freedom, and sadly the young driver of the lethal vehicle, as with so many others who wreak such destruction, could not find it.
The smell of cooked breakfast floats unhindered through the house. In fact, it is one of those things it isn't possible to stop. The young don't understand my furrowed eyebrows. They have the courage and energy of new leaves. There is nothing for me to say. My job is to have faith: in them, in the resilience of meaning and in Bastille Day.