Driving home from Hilton Head today, I steered through steely clouds until sun peeked through, until steel gave way to blue. I wound through bits of towns: gas stations, roadside stands, cinder block houses, trailers, water towers. And then, dark gold winter marsh like a tarnished, tired crown, then opulent waterfront houses, three or four at a time, then stands of trees, scrub forest, the road bending out of sight.
Writing to you from ONE South Carolina in Hilton Head for the Riley Institute Diversity Leaders Initiative Graduate Weekend. In addition to having the pleasure of spending time with some of brightest minds and kindest folks in the state, we’re being engaged and inspired by thoughtful dialogue about poverty, healthcare, education, and economic development in South Carolina.
Soundbite of the day that is still lingering and resounding:
“The opposite of love is not hate. It’s indifference.”
Last night, singer/entertainer/educator/vocal powerhouse and founder of the Hallelujah Singers, Marlena Smalls, sang an a cappella version of “He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands” that brought me to my knees. (Sidenote: She also played Bubba’s mama in Forrest Gump.) She was kind enough to let my friend Johnna and me sneak a photo with her today. Thanks, Marlena!
Thanks to the entire Riley Institute team for putting together such an amazing and inspiring weekend. This is how revolutions begin.