Born in 1953, I started my life at a period when more babies have been entering the German population than never before. World War II, more or less the end of the world - as my late grandmother mostly describes that time - has ended eight years ago. It was not the end of everything. The world economic crises changed into another economical world wonder.
During the Sixties, we looked upon the youth culture of Woodstock as a symbol - of the power of music, the pursuit of self expression, the values of peace, love and community, and the rejection of "the establishment" - even in the midst of torrential rain and an aftermath of foot-deep mud.
I enjoyed our flower power peace generation with long hair. Yes, I confess, many times, I was really very cynical about my parent's values. I really rejected anything that suggested tradition.
By the way, that's one thing, which can be observed also in the Philippines since a couple of years. I observed such changes since my first visit in the Philippines in 1976. Nowadays, I feel happy, if my nieces and nephews start listening again my ideas and ask my advise.
Respect your elders and betters! That's how I learned it during my childhood.
The slogan "Never trust someone above 30" had to be abandoned since I crossed that divide myself. Now, hopefully at the second half of my present life, "30" looks impossible young. And let's be honest to ourselves: Aren't we facing the same realities our parents did: Raising families, needs to pay for school et cetera et cetera? We have held fiercely to freethinking and the not traditional ways our parents - shaped by the "Depression", World War II and much more - never got the luxury to feel.
Those of us who have made good money, hold fewer illusions that a big house and a Mercedes (or any other brand!) in the garage are likely to bring happiness. But guys, what seems most precious to us nowadays is not career or success, but time and the freedom to do the things we love to do that hold meaning. Earnings through a job we don't like might be painful; but isn't it much more painful to wait for nothing while being fed by a friend?
Failed marriages, difficult mid-life attempts, something that might pass away a family - yes, I think, we know the rarity of solid and long living relationships with a partner, with children or with a hard to find friend.
We may even dare to speak the language that 30 or 40 or even 50 years ago would have seemed uncool. Call it God or something spiritually, but it would probably be the quest for the sense of life, an the hope and faith, that one exists.