These Luminous Things
No resident of the East Bay has gone untouched by the October tragedy brought on by massive wildfires in our North Bay region. We all breathed in the smoke, and we all know someone who has been more deeply affected. The fires are contained, but the losses of life and property are a legacy that continues to motivate us toward efforts to help those affected. As we at Edible East Bay saw the outpouring of support coming from all over the community, we started a list on our website with descriptions and links to many initiatives. We keep adding more as we hear about them.
Due to our local food mission at Edible East Bay, the harm to our Northern California agricultural community has been especially poignant. We learned that several of our advertisers have sustained losses. One in particular, Frey Vineyards, is in the Mendocino County Redwood Valley fire zone. Their website home page describes the devastation, but also adds an important comment: “While the winery has been described in the media … as ‘demolished,’ we feel that this term doesn’t apply to our resilient spirit to rebuild. We are so grateful to live in a rugged back-to-the-land community that supports each other and has a collective power for renewal.”
East Bay people working in the wine trade have gone above and beyond in support of their collaborators in the affected areas, and many have made an important point that I want to highlight here: We can all help by purchasing items and services from the businesses that have been affected.
That general sentiment is something I like to highlight each year in this space: By gifting and celebrating with locally produced goods from locally owned businesses, we strengthen our community. It infuses our businesses with the money they need to operate, and it builds connections between ourselves and the people who work and create here.
The Luminous Things on these pages are all posts found on Instagram chosen because they represent local businesses and craftspeople sharing their passions. Some posts come from our advertisers, and all are from businesses that we have many reasons to appreciate and admire. We hope you will join us in thanking them for what they give to our community.
These luminous things help light up the dark season, and that light helps draw us together into circles of connection. Those connections give us strength, and they help us work together toward better times—always, and especially when we face tragedy.
May your holiday season be filled with light.
Cheryl Angelina Koehler