children

The Poem


I love poetry.  I have since I was a kid.  I used to take books with me when I’d go walking out in the woods behind our house and sit beneath a tall oak tree and read.  Elliot, Wordsworth, Thoreau, Service.  I especially enjoyed the writings of Robert Service.  He wasn’t very subtle in his poetry, unlike other poets who I think tried too hard to seem intelligent.  What he wrote about, mostly, was wild men of the west, particularly the North West.

I was working in Alaska a few years ago, Cordova to be exact.  One of the few days I had off, I strolled into Orca Book and Sound book store there and found The Illustrated Robert Service.  It was costly as most things in Alaska are, but I bought it anyway.  I figured I was making some good money and could spare a bit of change for something to read in my bunk between shifts.

It’s a nice book.  I’m glad I bought it.  It kept me from getting too homesick many a night as I lay there, the sound of floors creaking, seagulls squawking, men snoring and the ocean pounding the shore just outside.

If you never read Robert Service, might I suggest you go to a local bookstore and pick up a used copy of one his volumes?  Google just isn’t the same as holding a book in your hands and letting the words seep into your skin.  Simple, his poetry might be, but I think it strikes a cord with every man whose ever had fanciful dreams of striking out into the wild to see what he’s made of.  That, and finding gold.

“I panned and I panned in the shiny sand, and I sniped on the river bar; But I know, I know, that it’s down below that the golden treasures are;
Clancy of Mounted Police
‘Tis pale and grim by the Polar rim, but seek and ye shall not fail.’
“And lo! that night I too did dream of my mother’s sister’s son,
And he said to me: “By the Arctic Sea there’s a treasure to be won.
Follow and follow a lone moose trail, till you come to a valley grim,
On the slope of the lonely watershed that borders the Polar brim.”
Then I woke my pals, and soft we swore by the mystic Silver Flail,
‘Twas the hand of Fate, and to-morrow straight we would seek the lone moose trail.
– The Ballad of Northern Lights
Just a couple of snippets for your pleasure.   I find it interesting that the first time I walked into to Collected Works bookstore and got a copy of The Thrill of the Chase, the first thing that came to mind was my copy of The Illustrated Robert Service.
I’d bet a dollar to a quarter that somewhere on Mister Fenn’s bookshelf lies some Robert Service poetry…
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No Reason I think that… just saying.
Anyway,  just some random thoughts for you.  In other news, I finally landed a job and start training next week. My wife will be giving birth to my son somewhere around the 30th.  Its likely I will miss it.  We’ll see if I can convince my boss, to give me a day off, even though I’ve just started, but if not, well, as a wise woman has said to me more times than I can count, in my life, “Ya Gotta do, what you Gotta do.”
So there’s that.  Treasure Hunting is on hold for the moment, but I wish the best to those of you out and about. Be careful. Watch out for Bears, snakes, and Reality Shows.
We’ll see ya in the woods. (Maybe)
– Ricky
Categories: baby, children, fatherhood, forrest fenn, hiking, love, Poetry, pregnant, Treasure hunting | Tags: , , , , | 3 Comments

Things to do in New Mexico while not finding treasure


This weekend, the wife, the youngun and I set off on a great adventure into the wilds of the Jemez.  Ok. Not really a “great adventure” so much as chance to get out of the house and breath some fine mountain air. While we were out, I kept an eye out for the Fenn Treasure as perhaps it may be laying by the side of one of the roads of which we were driving. Yeah, not really.

In case I haven’t mentioned it, which I’m pretty sure I have a million and two times, the wife is with child. She’s been feeling a bit of the cabin fever, especially with her recent battle against Kidney Stones and problems breathing, so I threw her in the car, strapped the kid to the top and headed north for a day trip of some New Mexico National Monuments.

Our first stop was at the Coronado State Monument
jemez04062013

First, a few things about this picture.

• You may notice my wife’s face is blurred out.  I assure you that is not a normal look for her. She just doesn’t go walking around blurried faced.  She did warn me however that should I post a picture on the internets of her without makeup, I would one day wake up to find a horse head on my pillow… (She didn’t say horse head because she’s never seen the Godfather but you get what I’m saying…)

• My jeans are dirty like they are, because, these are my famous “treasure hunting” jeans. You may have seen them in previous posts.  Autographs available upon request.

• My son is giving the dirty eye to the camera because the nice folks who offered to take our picture were people he doesn’t know and people my son doesn’t know and come within five feet of him, get the dirty eye.  I dunno… he’s like that.

• Finally, that is not a subdivision behind us, it is in fact an ancient Pueblo village, where ancient folk used to walk around doing ancient things and trying NOT to draw pictographs of their wives without makeup… just saying.

 In the entire time I’ve lived in New Mexico, I’ve never visited the Coronado State Monument. Considering it is only 15 minutes or so from where I live.  If you stop by, make sure to say hey to Alex, the park ranger and ask him to give you a tour of the paintings they have hanging up there, made about the year 1300.  Be sure  to ask about the one of the “Egyptian” who visited the pueblo…. 900 years ago.

jemez04062013-002A better picture of my son at Coronado State Monument minus the Dirty Eye.

We didn’t spend as much time as I would have liked because the boy was getting hungry and cranky and apparently feeding kids is more important than ancient history… that’s what my wife said anyway..

So we got some grub at the local Blake’s Lotaburger, which was horribly overcrowded, then headed up 550 to San Ysidro, the turn off to the famous Jemez Ruins, which used to be the home of the ancestors of the folks living at the current Jemez Pueblo, which most folks like myself are not invited into…with good reason I suppose. It’s also the turn off to the famous hippy hangout, Jemez Springs.

Fun Fact: Jemez is a spanish version of the word hay mish.  When asked by the spanish coming into the pueblo to dine with the folk at Jemez for the first time, they asked em, “Hey fellas, What do you call yourself?”, to which one fella of the Pueblo, presumably the Tourism Director, replied, “People”… Which is what hay mish means.  Unfortunately, the Spanish and most of those coming after never really caught on that they were people rather than slaves and subjects… <—insert editorial.

jemez04062013-003

Stopping on the road to Jemez Ruins

My wife slept on and off during the short trip up there and was only awakened by my many “Hey!  Look at that! Did you know in (insert guesstimated time period) that (insert partly factual statement about said place)”.  My son on the other hand, didn’t even pay attention to my many intellectual and historic oral spews. He slept the whole way.

She did get out to stretch her overly stressed legs and back when I stopped for a bit of a pee at the “Welcome Sign to Jemez”.

So when we got to the the Ruins, I left them to their own sleepiness and walked around oohhing and awing by my own self.

Old Spanish Church Ruins

Old Spanish Church Ruins

 

Didn’t take too many pictures as I left my camera in the truck and only had my foggy phone with me. Just between you and me (or is it you and I?) I dig (not literally) old historic things like these.  I tend to let my imagination fly in these places.  The history of people who occupied the same space I am in at that moment, and what they did and how they lived is fascinating to me. Not even just the ancient people but folks from the 1960s back to 150000 years ago is an amazing journey of thought.  2000 years from now, I doubt there will be any mystery about us.  We have labeled and stowed away so much information about who we are and what we’ve done that I can’t imagine any kind of serious interest by our descendants. Interest comes from the mystery not the facts. When our lives are so detailed in blog posts, and videos and pictures and books and tweets, who’s gonna really care?  Archeologist will have to find a new profession in the future, because there won’t be any new thing to discover.

Sad if you ask me…as I write in my blog and post pictures of my life….

Anywhoo,

We rounded out our trip by stopping by the Valle Caldera.

jemez04062013-004

The Valle Caldera is an old Volcano.  It’s gorgeous. Amazingly beautiful. Unfortunately, the meal from Blakes Lotoburger caught up to me about then so we had to run down the road until I found a proper place in the woods to pay homage to the pulled pork sandwich. Was that too much information.  Sorry.

We were gonna stop by Bandolier but by the time we got to the gate it was already 5 and we were all tired and cranky.  Plus, if you have allergies, going into the mountains to get some fresh mountain air is not all its cracked up to be, so we just headed on home.

That, is pretty much the sum of our trip. A day in my life if you will. You’re welcome. I’m sure your awe inspired to take the trip yourself…

Just in case you get a chance while out here on vacation or treasure hunting or research, I highly recommend visiting some of the state’s monuments. The monuments are interesting, but the road trip itself is worth the time.

So there you have my addition to the State Tourism Machine. I’m sure they’re grateful I wrote it…

Be careful out there and I’ll see ya in the woods,

– Ricky

 

 

Categories: children, fatherhood, forrest fenn, hiking, love, marriage, pregnant, Treasure hunting | 2 Comments

This Amazing Life


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Life amazes me. The creation of it. The beginning of it. The living of it.
When my year and a half year old was born, I cried as they lifted him up and he peed on the nurse. I looked at my wife, who was dazed a bit from the ordeal, then looked at my son again as they set him down on the scale, his lungs filling with this fresh new air then letting that air back out again in the form of a wailing scream, and I prayed, “Thank you Lord”

Thank you Lord for these lives and for putting them in mine.

Leonardo there, to the left, is set to see daylight in just a short few months.  He’s pushing and pulling at his mother, eager to get out I think.  Already, before he even takes his first breath, I’m imagining him in twenty, thirty or forty years.  What kind of man will he be?  Will he be strong and brave? Kind and caring?  Will he stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves? Will he know God on a personal level and not just as some abstract idea? In those years after I’m not there, what will his memories be of the time I’ve spent with him?  What can I do to help these next few years I have with him, bring light into his eyes?

These are the things I think about.

I’ve been looking for work now since the summer of last year.  It’s been a struggle to get through, wondering how the bills will get paid.  Feeling disconnected from my own self-worth.  Scratching at the buzzing in the back of my head that asks, if I’ll ever find work again and most importantly, when?

When I see this picture though, and I lay my hand over the smooth skin of my wife’s belly, inches from him, I don’t think of what is waiting in the future.  All I think of is that life is amazing. In every single way. Every single day. That my primary job on this earth, at this moment, is to be a father. Whether I find work now or never. Whether we are able to move out of the 2 bedroom rust bucket. to a place that will actually fit more than 5 people soon. Whether or not this or that.  My job is being a dad.  That, my friends, is amazing.

If you came here looking for the Forrest Fenn posts, they’re on you’re right. I’ll have more later when I get a chance.  Now I have to go pick up my 16 year old from driving school.

Be safe out there.

– Ricky

Categories: baby, children, christianity, fatherhood, love, marriage, pregnant | 10 Comments

Rich, Handsome and Famous


I am currently contemplating a trip up north of Santa Fe to do some treasure hunting. The Fenn Treasure is apparently still out there, waiting patiently, watching the bears, elk and squirrels ramble by, who sniff curiously at this odd rock sitting in their territory.  I assume that’s it’s “sitting” and not buried or immersed in water.  My assumptions are not aways correct though.

I’m still looking for work so time isn’t so much a factor, though perhaps it should be.

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Resting in Old town with Little Ricky

Telling my wife, who works everyday that I’m gonna go up in the mountains for a day or so while she watches our 15 month old and handles the 15 year olds drama, is akin to walking up to a Marine and slapping him in the face… the effect may be less harmful but the intent to do great bodily damage to me would be the same.

Irma and I on our wedding day

I love my wife.  Just want to put that out there.

Anyway, the point is that I am “considering” a treasure hunting trip”, whether that will happen or not remains to be seen.  I’ve read the book, looked at the interviews, read the blogs of others out there searching, so I have an idea or two on where it might be. 

My ideas though, go no further than the northern New Mexican border. Out of work fella’s with families can’t afford to be hopping all over the country looking for treasure. Since I hold no great credence to the possibility of actually finding the Fenn Treasure as it is, spending too much time on it would be in poor judgement. Not that I am opposed to using poor judgement as a general rule, poor judgement has usually gotten me in some horribly, exciting situations. As most would agree, those are usually the most memorable.

Speaking of poor judgement, I also started a business. And by “start” I mean got a business license.  Not much has evolved from that though.  Fish in a Tree is the name and I’m still working on figuring out what the business is.  I hear smart folk write business plans and such… no ones ever accused me of being smart folk though. Smart ass, sure. Handsome, yeah. Gorgeous and charming even, but not so much smart.

The business will be something creative, but whether that’s doing graphic design work, as my past would assume or some other creative pursuit is yet to be seen. In general I want to be able to work in a job that is beneficial to my community in some way but also allows me to make a comfortable living.  Is that too much to ask?

Eh,  I dunno.  I work hard when I work and believe that work itself is noble and should be given a 100 percent when doing it. Whatever that work is.  Finding the work is another matter though.  If you see me in McDonalds one of these days, you can believe I will make you the freshest damn Quarter Pounder that ever got made!

Petroglyph National Monument

In other news, I’ve been doing local hikes here and there. Albuquerque and the surrounding area has a plethera of great hiking as well as history.

Once in awhile I’ll find some out the way place that hardly gets any traffic

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Buried Knick Knacks

Cliff in the Ojito Wilderness

and I’ll dig a hole, drop in a container with some knick-knacks about myself and my thoughts.  Mark the spot, then in 20 years I’ll give the hints to my son and let him go find em.  In 20 years I’ll be 61ish. If I’m still walking the earth, and I want my son to get out and see the world.  Maybe these kind of things will get him moving. 20 year olds are notoriously hard to get moving in case you have’t noticed.  I hope at the very least, if I’m not around, it will give him appreciation for the outdoors.  Hopefully I’ll be here, but God takes us in His time, not ours.

 Finally, I am currently reading “Rio Del Norte” by Carroll L. Riley. It’s a fascinating look at the history of the folk who have occupied the upper Rio Grande Valley since prehistoric time. I have an idea for a novel that deals with this, which is why it’s fascinating to me. There i go again with my “idea’s”.  One of these days my “ideas” will make me rich, handsome and famous… hopefully though that fame doesn’t involve prison time. Heh. I kid.

Kinda.

So, there it is. Another long post in the life of me.

You’re welcome. I’ll see ya in the hills.

Categories: children, family, fatherhood, hiking, love, marriage, Treasure hunting | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment


Oh, the blogging, how I’ve missed you.  Not really.  I do sit once in awhile and attempt to write something that is informative, interesting, and has something or another to do with our lives, but somehow, I don’t.  I assume it has something to do with marriage, fatherhood, work, stress, life… stuff that inhibits the mind being able to create complete sentences.

On the other hand, it could just be I’ve lost interest in sharing my life. Ok. That’s not true. I’m a complete idiot on Twitter with little snippets of idiotic ramblings concerning my life. My thoughts on life. My thoughts on other peoples lives. Thoughts on farm animals and so on.  Perhaps I should twitblog.  I don’t know if that’s a thing but if it is, perhaps I should do it.

One of the reasons I tweet rather than actual sitting down at a computer and typing words, is that I’ve been spending most of my days in the truck. The work truck.  Just cruising the country side with just me and my thoughts. Which is quite scary actually.  My thoughts that is, though I’ve been told I have a rather intimidating figure. Which is usually dismissed after a few minutes of talking with me.  That and we have a 5 month old son who occupies a lot of space.  Space once used for my sitting and typing and thinking and stupidity is now inhabited by farting and pooping and crying and laughing and bending and attempts at speech.

The baby does some of that too, of course.

It’s quite wonderful really, if I may use an English sounding phrase. “It’s quite wonderful, really”. (You just need to imagine my English accent)  So much of my life was spent single,

Irma Pregnant

Irma in June

childless and in homes for the criminally insane that I never really understood the coolness of the kid thing. My nieces and nephews are awesome but then you see this brand new human being jump into the world without a clue that its a horrible, wicked place,  (the world) and that you had a part in creating him and realize what a miracle babies are.

“Whatever dude. Blah blah blah.” says the peanut gallery, ” My baby’s a genius.  Life is a miracle…..Overdramatize much?” 

Yeah, I get it. Everyone always says the same thing. Ask any parent of a newborn and through dark, baggy, cloudy eyes they will say “He/She is a miracle”.  I’m not sure until you hold this bag of fat with eyeballs in your arms and see him as yours, will the miracle ever be seen. Baby poop is a joy of biblical proportion. Just think about it. This little thing is sucking up the milk, and then pooping it out in disgusting smelly ways! C’mon! Poop is a miracle!  There.  Deal with it.

Little Ricky at 4 months

God is a bio-engineer of godly proportions.  Yes.  I just said that.  I couldn’t think of anything really to compare the awesomeness of it.  Maybe that’s why I don’t blog much anymore.  I’m a horrible writer and describer of things.

Anyhoo, life is good.. even when it’s bad. You know what I mean? ….. Vern.

Though, just between me and you, if it weren’t for my wife, my mom, my dad and my God, I might be bouncing off the walls right now….you know,  more than I do normally….just saying.

I’ll get back to regular posts of junk soon.  Though this blog may be titled “Ricky AND Irma, Irma prefers not to embrace the limelight…. err… something like that.  I really need a thesaurus.

Categories: baby, children, fatherhood, love, marriage, pregnant | Leave a comment

Living Dead


I was watching First Knight the other day, doing research on my family history…

What’s that? Oh yeah, I found out recently that I am related to King Arthur… no big deal….

Actually I’m related to a bunch of welsh kings who used to say they were related to King Arthur and also Joseph of Aramithea… because ya know, he went to Britian after Christ died on the cross and started selling tin… ahem. Hey, its what they say.

I don’t take these things too seriously when researching family history stuff especially after 200 years or so. If there’s no documentation, its just speculations. In fact, I’m thinking of creating a document indicating that I was president of the world, with photoshopped pictures and everything. That way 2000 years from now people will think its true…

Anyway, my brother and I have become, only because we are the only ones interested, the family historians. Ancestry.com helps with that. Our focus is mainly on the last 3 to 400 years. I am related to Rob Roy McGregor though. That’s almost a fact.

In doing this research though over the past 10 to 15 years, I’ve learned a lot about where I came from. You can look at names and dates. Census records that tell you where someone lived, maybe what they did for a living, but you can’t know what they thought when they woke up in the morning. You don’t know what dreams they had in say the 1840 census when they were living in Wood Texas and what dreams may have fallen by the way-side by the 1930 census living in Dawson County Texas.

A few have left records. One of my great great great grandmothers used to write notes about walking in the fields and singing prayers about her family and the generations to come.

I don’t know that any of the generations that come after me will see this. I’ll forget to pass on its existence before I die, if it even exists then. There was a time when I thought there would not be any generations of mine, so I wanted to leave a record so that if nothing else, I would be the crazy old uncle who lived alone and died alone, but with hours of stupid pictures and writings to look at.

Now, I have genes percolating in the belly of my wife and the possibility of little me’s for generations to come.

I still don’t want to be just a name on a piece of paper that tells when I was born and when I died. I want to fill in the blanks the way I wish my ancestors had filled in theirs.

It may not seem significant. Maybe its not. Maybe I’m suffering from some middle-child syndrome of wanting to be noticed and remembered.

I dunno.

Anyway, I had some time to kill this morning before heading out and it gave me a chance to let my thoughts wander. You’re welcome. All 3 of you.

Categories: children, fatherhood, love, marriage | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Fatherhood


Fatherhood, as defined by  wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn is : the kinship relation between an offspring and the father. What does that mean to me as I venture forth onto the starting line of “fatherhood”?  Not much really.   “the kinship relation between an offspring and the father” doesn’t really explain much.  What type of relation is it?

If I looked around a bit at the people in my life and in this world, I would have an even harder time defining it.  My stepson’s father hasn’t seen my stepson in more than 5 years. Is that fatherhood?   My nephews father stops in every year or two to say hello and preach the gospel to his ex-wife.  Then leaves.  Neither of them have sent a cent to help in the raising of the children.   Is that fatherhood?

There are men I know who spend holidays with their kids, talk about how they need to act, then watch as the kids return to their mother’s house.  A thousand miles away.  I don’t know that I would call them bad men, but if I were to judge, and I do, I would say they weren’t good fathers.

Then there are those fathers in my life who I can hope to imitate a bit here and there.  I never once doubted the love my father had for me growing up.  My brothers.  My older one raising a son and daughter into happy, healthy and my younger, raising his son alone, never once giving the thought of walking away.

Maybe because I’ve lived a large portion of my life without having children, I can be a bit more objective.  Some might say I don’t really have a right to say anything since I have no idea what they’ve been through.  I dunno.

What I know is, that I don’t want to be those first mentioned men.   Perhaps that’s all the judgment I need to have.  I’m certainly not perfect, and I expect the next few years to bring out my imperfections more than any thing else ever has.

I look at the past five years or so spent with my step-son, whom I’ve come to regard as my own, and wish I hadn’t come in late on that.  Now that he’s a teenager, trying to find how that relationship fits is even harder than it might be for others.

I wasn’t expecting to be a brand new dad at the age of 40.  I had resigned myself to living vicariously through the lives of others in that regard.  Here I am though, and I find myself looking in the mirror every morning, trying to contemplate the next 20 years.

More than what kind of man I want my son to be, the questions is, what kind of father will I be to my son.  When it comes down to the wire on why men are the way they are,  why they act the way they do, what kind of father they had is the biggest consideration to take in.

Maybe that’s just me though.

Categories: children, fatherhood, love | 1 Comment

Killing the Rabbit


 

Baby Ricky - 1971

There was a time in the world when Doctors would shove a needle full of a woman’s fluidly stuff into a rabbit.  If the rabbit died, the woman was pregnant. If not, then the rabbit turned into an exotic human/rabbit half-breed that was ultimately killed before it could go on a sexual head biting rampage….

 

I don’t know if that last parts true, but the first part is.  I think.  Anyway, as time progressed doctors decided to use peeing sticks to decide the pregnancy.  You, being the female, pee on a stick and it lights up with flashing neon if its positive.   Then you go to the doctor and get it done again, because in the end, you just peed on a sick and it didn’t really prove anything.

The whole point I’m trying to make is, Irma is pregnant.

Our relationship has successfully evolved from,  flirty-dating-marriage-baby.   I’m almost 40 and Irma (don’t tell her I told you) isn’t far behind that either.  So, pregnancy becomes a scary concept.  Pregnancy is always a scary concept though.  The idea of bringing an entirely new human being into the world and being responsible for teaching that human being how to interact and survive in a world of other human beings, is overwhelming.  The idea of doing it at our age makes for a bit more thoughtful consideration into how to go about it.

When this child is 20, I will be 60 years old.  60.   Not that 60 is old.  All my understanding as far as aging goes, 60 is the new 40. 40 is the new 20.  20 is the new… well, you’ve met the 20 year olds walking around these days……   Still.  Jorge will be swimming up-stream in his 30’s and Karen will be a few laps away from 40.  not to mention the grandchildren.   Karens daughter will be older than our child.  Insert internet sigh.   It happens all the time I’m told.   God knows what he’s doing and will give us what we need to do our best. He will.  Whether or not we pay attention is the scary part.

I am excited.  I am stoked.  I am scared out of my pants.  Which is what got us here in the first place.  Not the scared part, just the out of my pants part. Its good news. Its great news.

I now have the possibility of passing on my genetic information to thousands of generations.   God help the future of the world.

Our very modern family just became more-so.

– Ricky

Categories: baby, children, love, marriage, pregnant | 2 Comments

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