I was born and raised, till sixteen, in Newport Beach, California. In the mid-seventies it was a smallish town by the beach. It was still too busy for me. My favorite movie when I was fifteen was Jeremiah Johnson. I wanted to live in the mountains like Jeremiah. I thought I would run away from the busy beach to the wider woods.
Turns out I didn’t need to. My dad and I moved to Prescott, Arizona during the summer of my sophomore year. It was perfect. We lived in the woods just south of Prescott and I got to romp through the hot desert pines during brilliant lightening shows and make deep tracks up Spruce mountain in the wondrous snows. Life was good. I hated school.
So I figured I’d drop out. Fortunately, I was talked out of that and graduated from Prescott High. Then I attended Yavapai Community College. It was an uneventful experience similar to high school as I had little motivation, little direction, and lots of unsettling behaviors. Prescott College lived in the same town and after some exploration I understood that I needed some educational experiences that were a little more robust. So I attended Prescott College for three years. It was wonderful. It was different than what I had experienced in other schools. I knew then I wanted to work in the world of education.
Prescott became too big for me, too full of people like me, so I moved to Sedona. In 1991 it was pretty small and I worked at a small used book store and sold hot dogs to tourists. It was perfect.
Then, I met my wife. I had always written poems in high school and continued to while living in Sedona. There were pieces of me that needed further clarification. So I wrote them down on paper. Sometimes I would play my guitar and try to sing the poems. There was art in me. When I met my wife all of my poems came true. I no longer needed to write out the life I wanted. It became real. It is perfect.
I began teaching English at a private boarding school where I was able to create some good learning situations. I also was able to utilize the outdoors as I had always loved being outside. I was paid well to teach my favorite books, to hike in Yosemite, the Redwoods, and the Grand Canyon. I was paid to ride a mountain bike all over Utah. It was perfect.
I have always thought I had something to add to the world of education. Today I work as an instructional designer. In the old days there weren’t any of those. Today, with all the tricky new things we use in our daily lives, education has become something different than the old school house. So I guess we need to adapt. Adaptation takes lots of time and writing of poems to get it to look and become more perfect. Usually, I think it is what it is. Which, like all things, can be improved.
We have two daughters, 13 and 9, and we love to visit family. We try to improve ourselves. We are blessed.