Tradition is so ingrained in our culture, we rarely even notice it outside of “the holidays” when we tend to play it up and celebrate it. It’s fascinating to me that we look forward to a time of year that is so repetitious, when I think most of us would claim we don’t want that kind of monotony in our day to day lives. But once a year, for almost two months we gather on the same days with the same people to have almost the exact same conversations that we have had in years past. And, we really don’t like it when things are different.
Well, things are pretty different this year. It has been a wild year in a number of ways, and it feels punctuated by the recent events here in Southern California.
I’ll be honest, the veracity of the fires brought me a level of awareness around tragedy and community that I haven’t felt in a while. It made me realize how easy it is to disassociate other people’s problems from our own, until we share a similar experience.
Right now, I think we are sharing an experience as a country. The tragedies are varied, but the experience of loss and frustration, and of hope and support, are affecting many of us in our day to day lives.
With the devastation of so many homes and landscapes, my team and I have been having a lot of conversations with people who don’t know what will happen next. We’ve been touring properties and communities that almost look like they never existed, like something got started but not finished. And this isn’t the first time, but the magnitude really is astounding.
But out of tragedy always comes humanity, and people not just willing but called to be of service to one another. Which is a kindness that we so often save for the holidays. So maybe it’s not that different after all?
My team and I have been looking at the ways we can be of service, not just now in the wake of the fires, but to really help restore people’s’ sense of place over the next few years. We are committed to working with the government and private organizations, partnering with businesses, supporting charities, and lending our expertise to homeowners wherever possible. We believe in the power of community, and we are part of the community. So let’s work together to uphold the tradition of giving what we can.