How to become real… “Does it happen all at once…?  “It doesn’t happen all at once” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time…. by the time you are real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby.” The Velveteen Rabbit – Margery Williams

A little bit about me

In my youth, I was amazed at how much I already knew about life. I was fit and buffed, filled with determination and ready to share all my knowledge and insights with the world. I wanted to be a sailor. So I joined the Navy with duty in Washington DC and sailing the Pacific Ocean on an aircraft carrier. For the first time, I visited a foreign country, seeing more of Vietnam than I ever wanted to see.

Once home, an education beckoned so I obtained a degree in political science from a California University; a degree which ultimately led to work on several political campaigns and seven years employment with the Oregon Legislature.

A fascination with geology got me hooked on crystals, gems, and minerals. For 37 years’ – part time – I became a miner, visiting old mines and ghost towns all over the west, mining for crystals, in turn selling them to museums and collectors.

Along the way I became a husband and father to three amazing children and discovered the responsibilities that came with commitment and a full-time 30 year career in education.

A few years ago I retired, wondering what doors might open for me next. A dear friend needed some cash and sold me a camera. Since that time, photography has become a passion.

Looking back – my life has been filled with incredible adventures, amazing success and devastating loss. Physically I’ve picked up some pudginess, lost some of my youthful trim, my hair is white, and I can see the hands of age slowly creasing my face. I also now wear a spandex knee brace when I hike.

As I reflect on my 60-plus years that have passed, I feel more “real” and more alive now than ever. If nothing else, I’ve been amazed at realizing all I didn’t know about life and have discovered along the way.