“Everything starts somewhere, though many physicists disagree. But people have always been dimly aware of the problem with the start of things. They wonder how the snowplough driver gets to work, or how the makers of dictionaries look up the spelling of words.”  {Terry Pratchett}

Everyone begins somewhere. No one is born with a pen, computer keyboard, dough (both the malleable mixture and money), scalpel or hammer in their hand. Neither ballet slippers, running shoes nor work boots on their feet. We are either directed or find our own path in life. I was born as a Navy brat in an Army hospital who couldn’t stay still. Switch out the ballet slippers for climbing shoes and I’ve touched all of the above at some point in my life.

My first publication was created with a schoolmate for an Explorers Club that was composed of three members, but only two of us actually worked on it. And the club flag. Didn’t get much exploring done. Four issues later, the family moved and the club was decommissioned. I haven’t stopped writing since.

The first technology I delved into was a Baby Ben Alarm Clock. It had stopped ticking and tocking. I offered to fix it. Which I did. I graduated to household appliances and then computers. Something always needs fixing.

In college I took a biology class which turned into an anatomy class for a couple weeks. It beat two-dimensional diagrams in the book by a long shot. Two cadavers later, I started examining insects, fish, ant trails and spider webs to learn more things I would say ‘cool’ to. I still do.

When I was 10 yrs. old, one very early morning in Yosemite National Park, I woke up to take a photo of the sunbeams coming through the trees as the sun rose. It was all part of my plan, conceived the night before, based on a curiosity. The resulting photo was not perfectly balanced as I was standing on a hillside. The scene was captured with a Kodak box camera, but everything else was executed perfectly. It was my first photo. Preparation and planning is important for all phases of life.

In the second week of January 2014, during one of the hardest winters of the decade in the region, I began training to run my first 5K. Ice, snow and really frigid winds were my companions on many days. A hot shower after the training was a treasured gift. When you start any new venture during really tough times, you’re more likely to stick with it and learn from it even when the going gets easy. I’m still running, still learning and not letting the grass (or weeds) grow beneath my feet.