Several years ago (and I will tell you the number if you have that type of curiosity), I was born in Mast Hospital in what would soon seem to me to be the big city of Myrtle Point, Oregon.
Of course, it was not a big city. But when you come from an even smaller town like Powers, Myrtle Point seems large.
In the 1940s and 1950s Powers was still a going concern of about 1500 people. Most families, including my father, were involved in the area's prime industry -- cutting and trucking timber. We were a lumbering family as I would come to say.
We often have mixed memories of our childhood. Mine are all good. That may be because I was surrounded by loving relatives. My grandparents' home was a veritable mini-farm with baby chicks to enthrall a boy -- and a grandmother who could pluck a chicken in record time while recovering the not-yet-shelled eggs from the hen's uterus for use in some very rich custards.
I was a dreamer. A day-dreamer, actually. Several of my teachers (and a few subsequent employers) complained that, even though I was a good student, I had trouble keeping my mind on the task at hand. I was usually thinking of someplace filled with far more adventure.
My father was wise enough to see that the timber harvests were coming to a close. We moved from Powers to the Portland area in the late 1950s where there were no vast forests to be trekked and no chickens to be plucked. But it was a move that taught me adventure can be found anywhere by pulling up stakes and moving.
And that is why my father is responsible for me sitting at this computer on a beautiful morning in Mexico relating a truncated version of who I am on this my natal day.
When I opened my email this morning, I found birthday greetings from a very good friend I have known since grade school, one from a reader from Germany, and a gift book from my mother.
I have no celebration plans other than a trip to Manzanillo to pick up my dry cleaning. I will then top off the day by having dinner with a friend at a stuff potato restaurant in Villa Obregón. Most likely without my white tie ensemble.
It is just another day on my journey through life.