One can always find things to complain about, but this blog is one where I share some things I'm pretty happy about.
I live in a great town, in a great state, in a great country (yes, can you believe I'm saying that?). I just finished reading a wonderful biography of Abraham Lincoln, and the dedication he and the American people had -- that they were willing to fight and give their lives to save the only country whose government was a democracy -- was quite moving and inspiring:
that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. -- Gettysburg Address.
As I read about the sacrifices made to preserve the union, I realized how valuable and precious a democracy for all people is; I am thankful for it, and I am all the more committed to preserving it.
I love California and the Bay Area because of the beautiful weather and because it is a place of innovation and creativity.
I love Berkeley because it's not a city, and it's not a suburb, but something comfortably in between. I also love it because people here generally are dedicated to a healthy lifestyle mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. You can't walk a block without bumping into a therapist, a health practitioner, a yoga studio, an organic grocery, restaurants with delicious fresh, organic food, a book store, and so on.
Sun Microsystems is a great company to work for, and one of the things I think they get right is being flexible about where you work. If I had to commute to Silicon Valley every day, I would be miserable. If it was the only way to make money, I'd do it, but I'd be miserable.
But as it is, I am able to work from home, or take a quick bike ride up to one of the many nice coffee houses up on Shattuck that have free wireless. I can drink a latte, listen to some good music, feel a bit connected rather than just sitting in my house, and get some good work done. If I need to run an errand, there is a post office, grocery store, book store, deli, and a great alternative pharmacy all nearby. I recently hurt my back and there is a yoga studio a block from my main coffee house. There is a wide choice of chiropractors and acupuncturists, and generally I can bike from one place to the other without feeling I'm in a war zone.
And because I work at home or a five minute ride from home, I get to see my wife and family, and they get to see me. I am a familiar face. I am woven into my children's life rather than someone who pops in late at night to kiss them goodnight when they're already in bed.
So, there's a lot to be grateful for. I didn't cover the half of it. But this is what is on my mind tonight.