Of all the beautiful images of flowers that I captured at Carlsbad Flower Fields in southern California, these two were the most meaningful to me. I sat and watched the families photograph one another amongst the blooms that swayed in the breeze. My eye was caught by a row of solid magenta interrupted by one stark, white blossom.
Yet, beyond all of these gorgeous moments, I was focused in on these men. I considered family origins – my roots. My grandfather, as a boy, ran the streets of LA. As a young man, one of his many jobs was to tend carnation fields. I imagined him so many years ago (He turns 90 this year.) working hard for himself and his family to have what I now have. I considered the three generations of journeying through constant work, hope, pain, poverty, discrimination, assimilation to stability, security, safety, more hard work and prosperity. I envisioned the dichotomy, the gap, the chasm that lay between where I was, on vacation looking at pretty flowers, and where he was, working so damn hard for everything he has. A few yards of distance. An entire world apart.
I felt grateful for my history, grateful for where I stood at that moment and hopeful for him.