(Running with the vision for 2021)
Last night as 2020 finally came to an end, the clock struck midnight here in Montana, and fireworks started to scream for joy at the completion of this year. I wanted to join them, but my youngest son had just fallen asleep in front of our Christmas tree on the recliner ten minutes earlier. My daughter had gone to be with friends in another town. So, when the clock struck twelve and this year was finally over, I smiled and whispered, “Happy New Year.” I thanked God that I was alive and that all my friends and family had made it through this last year.
Wanting to experience the full effect of the night’s celebration, I grabbed my winter coat, made sure my son was asleep and slipped out the back door. The night air was crisp as the dark sky exploded in colors above my head. As the fireworks started to subside, I looked towards Canada as three Japanese lanterns slowly made their way towards my streetlights, flickering dimly. I wondered what hopes were sent out with these lanterns for the coming year. A few of my neighbors still had their lights on, and others had their campfires burning as others blew their little noisemakers when midnight hit.
Even though I was alone, the sound of scattered celebration reminded me that I was surrounded by a whole world of other souls who had experienced this last daunting year together.
After taking a few deep breaths of the cold night air, I slowly made my way back inside my house, hoping for a better tomorrow. As I unplugged the Christmas lights, kissed my son’s cheek, and headed off to snuggle down in my bed, I thanked God for all our blessings this last year. I slept soundly last night with the knowledge that in the morning, we would all get a fresh, new start.
This morning as I was drinking my coffee, I hesitantly planned a brief outline of what I wanted these next twelve months to look like.
Even though hardly any of my 2020 plans had turned out the way I had expected,
I chose to dream again, anyway.
I dreamt in dark, rich colors of chocolate brown, gold, and burgundy. I envisioned a little Charles Dicken’s styled town with flat-faced brick historical buildings that housed a downtown business community. I saw lots of foot traffic excitedly gazing at the beautiful shop window displays. I saw a thriving community filled with hope, laughter, common courtesy, and small talk. The riches of the world were being brought to this small town because of the clothing manufacturing company that was producing world-renown, vintage-inspired clothing. The manufacturing part of the company had been established on the hillside above the town acting as a beacon of economic hope for the locals. The second part of the company was a downtown storefront that housed the company’s clothing line and other products. The locals found not only work, good pay, great benefits but an extended family in the business that had long been needed in the small, poverty-stricken town. The economy had finally been restored, and a way to make a good living had returned.
I saw soft, silk scarves that I had designed adorning the necks of customers and street merchants. I saw Mongolian cashmere, French berets fashioned in the factory being worn by the locals with pride. I saw fine, Italian leather satchels and steamer trunk luggage that the company had manufactured being toted all over the world with its buyers. I could imagine the smell of the Italian leather luggage, purses, and shoes which reminded me of my grandfather.
I saw a Western-style vintage with a hint of English appeal that made our town famous, calling in merchants and buyers from all over the world.
I saw the flat-faced buildings painted with a theme and a color scheme. The nostalgic feel of the town enchanted all the outsiders who were seeking a new experience. I saw a little white village that had a simple strand of Christmas lights outlining its historical design. This village glowed as the hallmark of the town. I saw an ice-skating rink accompanied by a coffee, hot chocolate, and roasted chestnut stand. The stand was a cute, little flat-faced shed in the village being enjoyed by all the locals. The travelers who chose to stay for a few nights in the restored, downtown historical hotel also enjoyed the activities.
During December, the town’s shop keepers dressed in a Charles Dickens style and a horse-drawn sleigh gave visitors an authentic ride through the streets of downtown. Folks came from miles to visit this cute, little town that had once been the Christmas tree capital of the world. It was now famous for a world-renown manufacturing company and having a resounding theme of being lost in time.
The travelers had finally returned, and hope of a better tomorrow danced on everyone’s next breath.
I could almost smell the freshly poured peppermint-pine, gingerbread, and nutcracker, soy-wax candles that intoxicate the air in the fashion house’s storefront. The sounds of the bells above the front door ringing as customers joyfully patronized the shop. They came by the multitudes to marvel and pick up their custom-made clothing which was hand wrapped in brown paper bag packaging and tied up with string. “The finest clothing this side of the Mississippi,” proclaimed the customers as they exuberantly tucked their packages under their arms. Their eyes sparkled as though they had just inherited the family fortune. The dress shop had an old-fashioned feel about it which added to its allure. It reminded me of a custom tailor’s shop you’d see on the streets of London in the late 1800’s.
It had a European class with a small-town western charm.
I was known as the Dress Maker, and I adored the title. I saw strangers with our custom-made satchels strapped across their bodies. I smiled as I walked past, knowing that something that started as an idea was now draped across a tourist’s shoulder. A soon-to-be bride giggles as she excitedly throws open the double doors to make her grand entrance. She stops as she is taken back by the wonder of it all. The atmosphere of the store front’s crown molding, crystal chandeliers, and yards and yards of imported fabrics overwhelms her senses. She takes in all the colors of the beautiful wedding gowns that the manufacturing company has transformed into custom-made pieces. She starts to believe that just maybe, Fairy Godmothers do make dreams come true. The lace itself would stop any frilly-loving girl in her tracks. She and her friends have heard that our wedding dresses are the finest in the land and have come from across the sea for her first fitting. Of course, she brings her entire wedding party, and we accommodate them with our antique sofas, organic crushed mint-lemon sparkling water, raspberry cream tarts, strawberries and whipped cream, and imported Belgian chocolates.
One afternoon stop to the storefront makes any woman feel like she just treated herself to a month-long luxurious trip through Europe. From the rich feel of the fabrics imported from Spain to the B.V. Inc.’s signature perfumes to the engraved custom hat boxes, the whole experience makes every woman feel like a million dollars.
I think of all the marvelous items that the company will design and make as the world looks on in wonder. They watch in curiosity to see what glorious products will come next out of B.V. Inc.’s (B.Virtues Incorporated’s) fashion house.
I think about the public’s reactions and smile with delight. I think of the colors that will be chosen, and the world-suppliers that will supply the silks, satins, and cashmere. I also see a few partners working alongside me to make this vision become a reality. I see a New Year’s Eve party being held next year at the manufacturing company for all the employees and their spouses. I see black suits and ties and custom-made dresses for all the ladies who are present. I can imagine delicious charcuterie boards, a chocolate fountain, and sparkling cider as the firework display ignites the whole town with a sense of prosperity.
I also see that I am no longer alone in this journey and thank God for the few partners that will accompany me in making this come to pass. I thank God for the horizon of a new and coming year.
Without vision, we perish.
So, let us put the past to rest and look forward to a new beginning filled with life, laughter, and gourmet chocolates!
No matter how hard this last year has been on all of us, we cannot turn back the hands of time and, we cannot change anything.
So, let us not forget to dream, envision, and have hope for a better life ahead. If there is breath in your lungs, then there is hope.
If we change our perspective, then we can change your lives.
I pray that God restores, refreshes, and renews the vision that you once had.
And always remember to dream in color.
All my love,
Then you shall see and be radiant; your heart shall thrill and exult, because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you, and the wealth of the nation’s shall come to you.