Speaking of statistical improbabilities...

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mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Apr 9, 2013 - 01:07am PT
Nice jacket, nice TR, nice writing, nice drawing, too. LOL, Odd/Cam.

The Frank Hoover story is in Joe Fitschen's Going Up.

The pic of he and his juvy-dink partner's in there, too.

TY, Clint.
Captain...or Skully

climber
Apr 9, 2013 - 08:10am PT
Digging the muppet drawings, too. As well as her perspective. You gave her that, you know.
Smiles.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Apr 16, 2013 - 01:39pm PT
hey there say, boodawg... oh my, as i shared with you a bit agao, you will know why:

but i am sooo very happy to see these wonderful photos for lilabiene!

i am just ready to mail her a small token, so to speak, and i feared i had
greatly LACKED along the way, ;)


well, out to the mail, i go, now...
with my heart, rested assured, wow:
god is so good... :)


i love this whole story, it has touched my heart... i love families and i love how trails reach around and can come back and hug those that have
lost part of their lives...

this is what life should be about...


:)
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Apr 17, 2013 - 04:20pm PT
hey there, say...

just a bump so folks can read and see all the neat new photos...

:)
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 18, 2013 - 09:54pm PT

i love how trails reach around and can come back and hug those that have
lost part of their lives...

this is what life should be about...

Neebs, you have the most beautiful ways of expressing yourself. I love the image of what you wrote above. ")

It goes perfectly with what arrived in my mailbox today as a wonderful, heart-warming surprise from Frank.

A treasure from Frank Hoover. I'm overwhelmed.
A treasure from Frank Hoover. I'm overwhelmed.
Credit: LilaBiene

One of these days I'll invest in a scanner, I promise.
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 19, 2013 - 09:49am PT
Bump, because this poem is just right, at this moment.

Thank you so much, Frank, for your beautiful heart.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Apr 19, 2013 - 12:02pm PT
hey there, say, lilabiene...

just recently got 'postage hero' (two, all at once, actually) even as you had 'search angel'--very special folks, these are!

so, expect another package, it is just going out today... got set back, as,
i ran out of tape... :))

say, you are near my christmas-stamp-fairy, she is in walthan, and was told, even as you posted in another thread = to STAY in doors, today...

she loves the hoyts, and what they do each year, :)
she loved your share, as to that aspect, earlier...

well, got to go, so i don't miss the mail...

THIS IS AN EARLY mothers-day-fathers-day-gift kind of rolled into one,
you might say...

a little token, as i got the nudge from god above... >:D<
hope it will do okay...

:)




*i think the muppet will get a kick out of it, ;)
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 25, 2013 - 10:24pm PT
To Mouse and Neebs and their Helper Angels,

My heart to you.

I'm a puddle.

Will post more tomorrow, but wanted to say thank you for your wonderful, exceedingly thoughtful surprises...

<3

P.S. I wore the hat to sleep. Had to...er...break it in properly so-to-speak.
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 28, 2013 - 09:56pm PT
Dear Mouse, Neebs, your Helper Angels, and my adoption Search Angels,

I've had one full week of surprises completely unexpected, and I'm still very honestly trying to wrap my brain around your incredible, thoughtful, amazingly perceptive and generous acts of great kindness. I don't know how to thank you all for bringing to light things that have touched my heart so deeply. Having tried to compose this post several times, and failed, each time resorting to a box of Kleenex, I finally decided that I just need to write, however imperfectly.

To say that I am overwhelmed is a gross understatement.

Mouse's package arrived with a wonderful book on the history of Castle AFB, a hat from the Museum (picture posted elsewhere) which the hubby attempted to make off with -- lol, a couple of flying wingdings that the muppet promptly made off with, and the two BEAUTIFUL and incredibly thoughtful and touching articles below:

A beautiful, framed watercolor of El Cap by local artist Helen Swickar...
A beautiful, framed watercolor of El Cap by local artist Helen Swickard (note the beautiful butterfly adorning the painting), and a first edition of a book on the story of the Boston Post Road.
Credit: LilaBiene

The watercolor will find it's home next to the picture of Dolt with butterfly posted above.

A complete surprise was this beautiful painting done by our own Neebs, capturing Dolt, Ann, El Cap and the muppet and me, all based off of photos posted here and there around ST.

Neebs lovely painting...her beautiful soul shines right through...
Neebs lovely painting...her beautiful soul shines right through...
Credit: LilaBiene

If these random acts of kindness weren't enough, I got home Friday night after a really long week, and another box of surprises was waiting. The Search Angels who were so wonderful in putting me in touch with Ann's younger sister have been busy!

I opened the box to find these original magazines that I have been trying to track down for quite some time:

Pictures I saw for the first time on Friday...
Pictures I saw for the first time on Friday...
Credit: LilaBiene

Holding these magazines in my hands pretty much renders me speechless. I've looked at them over and over in utter amazement.

Needless to say, I couldn't believe there could be still more in the box.

Utter shock, I think best describes this.
Utter shock, I think best describes this.
Credit: LilaBiene

Equipment I can actually use...way beyond my comprehension. I've been carrying them around in my pocket since they arrived.

You have to understand that I happened to see these up for auction on eBay, and could only make a modest bid. When I saw what they actually went for, I was blown out of the water. Wow, I thought, someone really wanted those badly...and I guess I'm going to have to put away a small fortune if I ever want to buy any of my birth dad's equipment.

So you can understand my surprise opening the box to find these two magazines from approx. 55 years ago, and then the Dolt equipment I had thought was lost to me...

And not forgetting that Frank Hoover sent the most beautiful poem by Dolt to us just a week before...

I'm deeply humbled and grateful, and only hope that I can one day thank each of you in person. <3
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 1, 2013 - 09:09pm PT
Bump for Mouse & Neebs <3
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
May 1, 2013 - 11:00pm PT
BITD when we used to have tied over-the-shoulder slings, I had one of those Dolt nuts on every one of them. Since the sling went straight through (and the hole was beautifully chamfered), the nuts didn't weaken the sling at all when it was used as a sling. I have no idea what became of those nuts; I certainly never consciously got rid of them...
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
May 1, 2013 - 11:32pm PT
Just blown away sitting here with tears too.

Stuff like this is just ... wow
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 2, 2013 - 08:58am PT
I agree with "WOW"...heartily.

The folks I've encountered since this part of my journey began (whether in person, by phone, email, in cyberspace, in stories I've read) are...very simply said...extraordinarily beautiful, thoughtful (and thought-provoking), generous, inspirational and above all the KINDEST of souls.

I've said this before, but it bears repeating. If you had been in the (Kletter-) shoes of Ann or Bill, and for a multitude of challenging, heart-wrenching reasons not able to raise your own (surprise!) offspring, what more could you ever want for her than to have her taken under the wings of your greater family made up of your friends, family and the climbing community, who all loved you dearly?

A giant, multi-faceted prism taking in the sun's light, mixing it together with love and memories and connections, and emitting a dazzling array of the indescribable...
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
May 2, 2013 - 04:14pm PT
hey there say, lialabien... wow, all those treasures!!!!

gettng back, things that you felt were lost, is the cherry on top, as the ol' saying goes, :O wow!

so very glad the painting got there, well and GOOD!!...

i worry just a bit, in case folks may not be home, etc...
but it worked out perfect!!!


hugs to you, as you enjoy the missing pieces of your childhood, come
to bloom, blossom and fruit!

:)
god bless!!
Seamstress

Trad climber
Yacolt, WA
May 2, 2013 - 04:22pm PT
Love the good stories about the good people. Love watching those random acts of kindness. This is what a true community will do.
Bad Climber

climber
May 2, 2013 - 06:28pm PT
Wow. That Muppet is a killa. Kinda lost it there. Great story--sad, true and wonderful.

BAd
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 8, 2013 - 10:50pm PT
On Saturday the planets aligned, and we had beautiful weather in the Boston area...which meant we could finally go check out the bouldering and climbing walls at our Y. The muppet was beyond excited and left me in the dust running for the playground...

"I think this is as far as I'm going to go today..."
"I think this is as far as I'm going to go today..."
Credit: LilaBiene

Add a little friendly competition to the mix...
Add a little friendly competition to the mix...
Credit: LilaBiene

"I can do that, too!"
"I can do that, too!"
Credit: LilaBiene

"Yeah...I'm sending, Mom!"
"Yeah...I'm sending, Mom!"
Credit: LilaBiene

"Talk to my agent. You're messing up my floooow, Mom!"
"Talk to my agent. You're messing up my floooow, Mom!"
Credit: LilaBiene

So, needless to say, we (surprise!) wound up at REI (again), this time in search of climbing shoes and a harness for the muppet. She dug the "Rock Monkey" shoes even though they weren't pink and even wore them to bed. ")

Unfortunately, the weekend was over all too soon and we're back slogging through the weekday madness. But tonight when we got home, there was a mysterious package addressed to the muppet peeking out of our mailbox...what could it be?

A PINK &#40;woohoo!&#41; t-shirt with Mama's daddy's name on it!!! &#4...
A PINK (woohoo!) t-shirt with Mama's daddy's name on it!!! (Note Crusher's book, open to the pages with the picture from the Totem Pole that's been on the sofa since Saturday when she got her first pair of rock climbing shoes...) :D
Credit: LilaBiene

Thank you GLee!!! The muppet sends you big hugs for the t-shirt she calls "SO cool"!!!

Edit:
Ack -- trying to fix the pictures.
FRUMY

Trad climber
Bishop,CA
Jul 25, 2013 - 12:12pm PT
Thanks, for one of the Taco's best threads.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Jul 25, 2013 - 12:27pm PT
Amazing Lila. Good on you for your "detective" work and research.

Jennie gave up her infant daughter (Rachel) for adoption in 1970 (Jen was 19, and it was Ireland after all, single mothers were not allowed). She then fled to France (Nice) not too long after. And of course, the natural parent cannot look for their offspring by law here in Ireland. The meeting must be initiated by the "child".

Years later (2006), Rachel contacted her (I met Jen in August 2007) in Dublin. Jennie met up with Rachel. She had ended up in a well-to-do family and was running her own equestrian centre in the Wicklow Mountains.

That was the only time they have met. No word since.

Her boyfriend at the time, Richard, that was the father and from a very, very wealthy family, wanted to marry Jen and keep the baby, but he was a control freak (so Jen tells me), two years older, and totally dominating. And of course Jen's father was the same way (having abused Jen since she was five).

I can understand her decision to put her infant daughter up for adoption and get the "hell out of Dodge". Provence is much nicer anyway.

Lila, I am glad that you found some closure. Good luck and best wishes.

Cheers

Patrick

And Lila, it must be comforting in a way that in the climbing community (and I am sure elsewhere) that your natural father was well-respected and a pioneer in climbing equipment. What a great legacy.
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Technically...the spawning grounds of Yosemite
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 20, 2013 - 02:34pm PT
Patrick, thanks for sharing Jennie's story. The mother's point of view is not something that's captured very often, and I can only imagine how difficult and painful her experiences must have been. One of my deepest fears, which kept me from searching for my birth mom for most of my life, was that my re-appearance would have brought back many sad memories, causing my birth mom to go through experiencing loss all over again.

A few weeks ago I learned that Ann never told Bill she was pregnant, so he never knew about me. Until then, the question had remained unanswered, and given all of the unknowns, I had found a comfortable place where I could accept what I didn't know. Learning about and accepting this has been the most difficult experience on this journey so far. I can't write much more because it just hurts too much. The weight of responsibility is more than I can conceive of or bear. Had I been able to make contact with Ann, I am now certain that it would have been horrible for her.

This hurts all the way around, so I am trying with everything I've got to make something good come out of it...one way or the other.

Photo courtesy of Valerie Cooley
Photo courtesy of Valerie Cooley
Credit: LilaBiene

As has been the case throughout the past year and a half, whenever things get to be too much, the invisible forces at work reconnect me to Ann or Bill. In this case, it is Valerie Cooley, who knew Bill through her good friend Laurel. (The photo above is of her pack, which she still carries today.) Makes me smile.

Valerie wrote to me of her own accord and shared some things about Bill that really touched my heart. I have a better idea now of who he was and how he related to the world.

A surprise in the mailbox
A surprise in the mailbox
Credit: LilaBiene

Sat and held this gingerly for a while...
Sat and held this gingerly for a while...
Credit: LilaBiene

Reminds me of one of those 007 movies...can't remember which one "&#41;
Reminds me of one of those 007 movies...can't remember which one ")
Credit: LilaBiene

Was very excited to read this for the first time!!!
Was very excited to read this for the first time!!!
Credit: LilaBiene

By the time I finished reading, I really needed these! &#40;I grabbed ...
By the time I finished reading, I really needed these! (I grabbed a tissue instead.)
Credit: LilaBiene

Valerie mentioned that she had recently found some poems of Bill's, and said that she wanted to send them along to me. I was looking forward to photocopies...I never imagined she would send the original. (I'll post the poems in a separate TR.) She also included a couple of the most beautiful, handmade handkerchiefs I have ever seen -- the needlework is exquisite. Bill gave these to her "just because"...and she gave them to me...

Valerie, thank you, more than I can say in words.

My birth parents' friends are their reflection...and what a beautiful image they have made for me.

No room for sadness in my heart; it's filled with love.
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