It was beautiful, one of the perfect weather days in the bay area. And at the podium was the marvelous, brilliant man with the kind voice: Ken Burns. He imparted sweet wisdom to this year's graduates at my beloved Stanford. And he blistered Donald Trump. Did you miss it? Then, here it is. Enjoy.
For weeks now, there've been middle and high school graduations, and college and university ones, too, here in the bay area of California. Some grads are taking a quick summer break before stepping into their next, new adventure. Others are moving seamlessly into the next phase.
And the parents speak of bittersweet feelings; the friends and neighbors join in celebratory parties and feel a tinge of that bittersweet, too. Rites of passage, the passing of time.
And then, after graduation? After you've attended a few - some more dearly important than others? I'd offer you the thought to make a little summer playdate with yourself. A little fun. A few little joyful hours. Creating, learning, daytripping -just briefly step out of the regular and practice some play therapy.
I personally plan to start with the abundance of ice my newly hooked-up ice maker is producing. Ice-dying - a wee bit like tie-dying but with more subtle flair. Here's a link to start your engines: Ice-dying. And here's an image from that link just so you know what it looks like.
I think they belong in a seaside cottage, with many more pillows to give us the sense of summer rest and retreat, don't you?
Here's another thought: get lost.
I'm sure there are a lot of little towns, parks, mountain trails, picnic sites, and spots that you haven't visited recently (or ever) within driving distance of your little place in the world. Fill 'er up, grab some dough, and hit that road. Destination? If you're looking for one, just Google it - I did and in a few seconds, I found this Smithsonian site with 20 best small towns to visit. Surely there's one near you. If not, Google your area, and find one. (It counts if you make a return visit to a place you've been to before, but haven't been to in a long time.) Mine is John Muir Woods, a wonderland of nature's beauty. I haven't been in many years. Below, a photo that tells you why I long for Muir Woods.
One last thought for the after graduation blues: be a lifelong learner.
There are many online art classes, some of which are 'go-at-your-own-pace', offered by stellar artists who really can teach, too. (Email me for recommendations of my favorites, and I'll let you know about the two I'm currently taking, which are both great fun.)
Enroll in a foreign language class, or a wine-tasting course, or ballroom dancing (yes, I've done all those in years past after graduations). What about learning piano, or how to weld?
Yoga and zumba are on nearly every corner, but how about circus performing arts (in Oakland, California, take classes at Trapeze Arts) for the athletic among us?
Summer solstice is creeping closer and closer - let's make the after-graduation time of summer the splendid start of something new for us, too.
So, get to it - and drop a line to tell me what y'all are doing after the graduations.