It was the time when Adam Steele would normally share a blue highways hero message with his team. This year he decided to do something different. He had received a letter from his children (now young adults) which he decided to share with others.
Seven years ago, you took us on a blue highways journey. On that trip we met immigrant children who we helped with their English skills, and they helped us with our Spanish skills. As you know, we stayed in touch with them over the past seven years and we have become a virtual community. We’re sorry that we weren’t able to be with you and mom this year for Christmas, but all of our friends from 7 years ago decided to have a Christmas together.
All of them have graduated from high school. Most have college degrees, thanks to your help. Those without college degrees have decided to advance their talent in other ways. In our community, we have a medical doctor, 2 nurses, an engineer, a computer scientist, an artist, a glass artisan, 3 teachers and an entrepreneur.
I’ve shared with them the blue highways stories that you and your team have generated. We have had a very lively online discussion of them each time a story is released. I can truly say that they have had an impact on all of us. There is a lot to be said about the simplicity of the messages and genuineness of the lessons that are captured in the messages.
Here’s our big news. Every one of us has decided to live and work in a blue highway community. We want to make a difference, but we also want to live a life away from the toxicity that has become our society today. A life of simplicity is our way of truly making a difference.
You taught us how much of a difference we can make in that trip 7 years ago. But just imagine what a difference we can make if we live simple lives in the communities across the country that have been largely forgotten.
Now we want to pay it forward. Each of us has agreed to share with you stories of blue highways lives. These are going to be stories of character, virtues, values, beliefs, and simply what it means to be authentic. We hope you will find these stories helpful.
We are guided by a Chinese proverb that says: “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.” You planted a tree 10 years ago when you began your blue highways journeys. We are continuing to plant trees with the lives we want to live.
Taylor and Jordan
* * *
“To make a difference in someone’s life you don’t have to be brilliant, rich, beautiful, or perfect. You just have to care enough and be there.”