I took my daughter out to lunch for her 26th birthday today. It was a lovely day, and we sat outside and enjoyed the cool breeze at one of Tallahassee’s nicest little restaurants, Kool Beanz. They have a great menu, and being an organic gardener and foodie, I especially appreciate the fact that they feature produce from our fantastic local farms and fisheries. We really enjoyed relaxing and eating some great food outdoors in the beautiful spring weather.
But Natalie also had something really special happen for her birthday. And she deserves it! A local county librarian, she has raised literally thousands of dollars for Monticello’s library, and she wrote a grant that got the library their brand new computer lab. She’s a Fulbright scholar who went to college at the age of 16, graduated at 18, and spent a year living in a madrassah in Indonesia, teaching little Muslim girls English–one of the only American women to do so on behalf of the U. S. Department of State. She is also the recipient of a President’s Volunteer Service Award for her work in disadvantaged neighborhoods on the East Coast as part of Americorps. Natalie is just about toreceive her master’s degree in library and information science. She is way, way cooler than I’ll ever be. Follow her on Twitter @nataliebinder!
So it was really fitting today that at her birthday lunch, she ordered one of her favorite foods. Fresh, fried Appalachicola oysters. The best oysters in the world. And even more fitting that she found a real pearl in her oysters! A real pearl. Happy birthday, Natalie! I can’t imagine that this would happen to anyone other than you.