Interview with ?

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For Bloganuary the prompt was to interview a fictional character. Read and follow the clues to discover who I interviewed.

Since your creation in 1919 being the first of what we call today a superhero, I thought it best to have this interview with you. Thank you for agreeing to do this interview.

I do not have a problem answering a few questions, as long as you uphold our agreement of not mentioning my name or giving away my identity.

Agreed. When did you decide to become a hero?

I received a letter from my father while I was away at the university. In the letter my father sounded upset and frustrated with the injustice happening in our community. I decided to return home to assist, but did not think of becoming a hero. The commoners, poor and Native Americans made me the hero and gave my hero persona a name.

Did you form a plan on how your were going to assist the people, or did it just happen?

On the ship during the trip home from the University I formed a plan. The trip took several months, I had time to work out the details of how I would behave when I returned home and how I would help the people, with out being caught by the authorities and killed for treason.

Why do you choose to wear the clothes you do when you are assisting the people? Does your clothing carry a special meaning?

My clothing is plain and available to the common man. If I were to dress in the clothing of my prominent status I would be know to the authorities. I choose the color black so I am hard to notice in the dark and in the shadows. I can move in on my target slyly and cunningly. There is no special meaning to the color or what I wear other than my rapier, my choice of weapon.

Is it easy living a life with a dual or split identity?

In the matters of the heart, most definitely difficult to live a dual identity. In public I must act the coward so the authorities do not learn my true identity as the people’s hero. The young woman I love with all my heart looks at me with disgust and talks only of the greatness and bravery of my hero identity. Aww, but when she sees me, being the hero, during a short glimpse of time our eyes meet, and she looks at me with love and admiration. I only wish she would look at me that way always.

Why do you always leave a mark on your work? Is it pride?

I do not leave my mark for pride or fame or money, only for justice. I leave a single letter as a mark or brand so the common people and Native Americans, I help, are not arrested and put to death for my actions. The innocent should never pay for others illegal actions.

You have been the influence for other heroes and a major influence in the creation of Superman and Batman. How does this make you feel?

I am honored to have influenced others to seek justice for those who do not have the skills or means to defend themselves. I might be the first hero created by an author, but I am far from being forgotten in the dust with the fairly recent U.S. movies about me released in 1998 and 2005 with excellent actors and actresses who are very well known.

I am in movies created worldwide as well as series shows, animations and even toys. The people are not forgetting me and how I fight for the common and poor of the community.

Thank you for this interview, it has been enlightening. May you continue to be the hero for justice to future generations.

Z

If you know who the interview is with, leave an answer in the comments.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog.

amtolle

A Quote for a Lifetime

My Grandson at 3 years saying “Hello” to Sis

There is nothing better for the inside of a man that the outside of a horse.

John Lubbock/Winston Churchill

I am a certified horse trainer and riding instructor, although I no longer train others horses or do lessons. I have spent years teaching youth to ride. I worked with different organizations introducing the horse and teaching youth who had never been around the majestic animal.

“Where in this wide world can man find nobility without pride, friendship without envy, or beauty without vanity? Here where grace is laced with muscle and strength by gentleness confined” — from the Ode to the Horse by Ronald Duncan, created for Horse of the Year Show

My stallion and I together

The horse, with beauty unsurpassed, strength immeasurable and grace unlike any other, still remains humble enough to carry a man upon his back”

 Amber Senti

A horse is powerful, graceful and athletic and can hear your heart beat as you walk up to them. They can feel each and every muscle in your body as you sit in the saddle. There movement is silk beneath your legs.

Yet, can be gentle as a kitten.

My 3 year old grandson and a 6 month old colt.

Horses are used in physical rehabilitation or physical therapy called hippotherapy. The movement of the horse stimulates every muscle of the rider without strain on the rider’s muscles. Horses are being used in the United States to help service men and women with the emotional stresses due to combat.

My son-in-law on his first time ride and being around horses, coached by my daughter.

amtolle

Back to the Beginning

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It is bitterly cold as the north winds blows down through the valley, the woman tightens a coat that no longer fits due to the growing baby inside her. Home, or more the place she is staying is not far away. There are many doubts and fears are running through her mind as fast as the wind blows in her face. One major question keep haunting her through the howl of the winter winds “am I making the right choice?”

If I could travel back in time, there is only one place I want to go and that is to my beginning, to just before I was born. I am adopted. I was put up for adoption at my birth or very shortly there after. I lived in a place for a few until I was thirteen months before placed with a man and woman whom I call daddy and mom.

I was born in the winter, in a hospital at the foot of mountain located in a valley that runs north and south. In the town of my birth there was a home for unwed mothers and adoption agency. The puzzle to my story is my biological parents were married. They had been married for two years before I was born. My biological father was a US Marine during the Vietnam conflict.

So, I would like to speak to my biological mother and ask one question, well more than one, most important “Why was I put up for adoption?”

Was I put up for adoption because she received a telegram saying my father, her husband was missing in action.

These are questions I will not have answers to as when I did get my birth and adoption records, both my biological parents were deceased. My adopted parents would never tell me, even when I knew I had to be adopted and asked mom point blank. The sad thing is everyone in the family including my cousins knew I was adopted, all except me. At the age of forty-eight, while talking with one of my favorite cousins, she told me I was adopted, the first time any family member had told me the truth.

I knew when I was twenty-two I was definitely adopted. I obtained my records at age forty-seven. I did some research and learned where my parents were born, where they married and their divorce was two and half years after my birth. I have half-siblings from both biological parents, but do they know I exist. Was my birth, existence kept from them as a big secret as being adopted was a big secret kept from me?

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We have choices we make everyday. Some of those choices are easy, some are hard, and some life changing no matter what choice we make. I am not angry at my biological mother for putting me up for adoption. I can not walk in her shoes to know the reasons behind her choice.

I am very happy to be alive, to have my life.

I have moved forward, I have children, grand children and a good life.

amtolle

Time Trap

Windmill in Maxwell, NM photo taken August 2009

I love taking pictures. I have hundreds of photos, mostly grandchildren, but very few I would call great. This old windmill is one of my great photos. My husband and I were on a drive, so its exact location I do not know, as we were not real sure where we were at the time. I asked him to stop, so I could take the photo. The old windmill is not in use for watering livestock or for the remnants of a home that stood near by. I do not know the name of the tree and I have not seen it during the time I lived and traveled in New Mexico.

A flower, name unknown, in our pasture the first spring we lived in Texas. 2010

I was walking in the pasture at the new home we purchased upon moving to Texas. I saw this heart shaped beauty. I looked this “weed” up and the flowers are supposed to be circular. I have not seen a heart shaped flower since.

The unique characteristic of photography is it captures what goes through the lens, freezing the moment of time. Does time stand still, only in a photograph.

amtolle

Mystery at the Farm

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On a road trip with the window down enjoying the warmth of the sun, the smells of spring, exploring the countryside with my eyes as I travel. My eyes venture to some old wooden buildings accompanied by a few tall, worn out cottonwood trees, the remnants of a yard fence, a rose bush in bloom. No sign anyone has traveled to the house or barns in years. I stop the vehicle to respectfully look, staying outside the barbwire fence surrounding the area.

There was a time someone had taken great pride in this home and barns. The rose bush more dead thorny stems than green, yet manages to bring forth its bright red blooms. Where once stood a gate, white iris peak out from the mound of the irises of yesteryear. Someone appreciated beauty around them.

There is not much water in the area as it is semidesert terrain. Yet, the cottonwoods trees show life water flows under ground, but the trees are ancient shown by their monstrous trunks, bending limbs and peeling bark. The house is surrounded by these old gnarly guards, who have stood guard so long their trunks press against the worn sides of the home. The yard fence only stands in the corners, the spans have fallen from weak disrepair.

The home door is closed, remnants of fabric represent the curtains that once hung in the windows that are have been reduced to frames without glass. Do I smell apple pie? A rock chimney and fireplace stand strong, the way the home was heated from the bitter cold of winter. The strength of stone will outlast the wooden sides of the home. The roof is complete but dips like an old swaybacked horse. How many more rain storms or snow falls will the old roof hold?

The barn is not guarded by any cottonwood trees. It stands alone to face the wind, the storms and time. The sides have missing boards, one door has fallen in defeat, the other hangs by a hinge clinging to the barn for support. The roof is half gone. The barn has been lowered to the status of only providing meager protection and comfort for the wild animals who may find this worn out shelter.

Who were these people who chose to make a home hundreds of miles from the nearest town? What were their hopes, their dreams that would inspire them to this place to create a home? Were their children who played in the yard? I think I hear laughter on the wind. Why did they leave?

I love old buildings, any where and anytime. I enjoy visiting ghost towns and learning the history of the individuals who lived there.

Hope you enjoyed this short adventure.

amtolle

Reading List

Fire Blossom or Pohutokawa

I do not get the opportunity to read much as I am busy with the farm and crafts. But with the end of Christmas, I take a break from crafts. I make sure my sheep are not laming in January and February as the weather is cold and wet. I do have time to curl under a blanket and read.

Two years ago some friends and I read “Fire Blossom” by Sara Lark. Not a real book club, but we would discuss where we were at in the book and our thoughts. We enjoy the historical novel set in New Zealand. They have read the second in the trilogy.

I am hoping to be able to take some time and read the second book “Fires of Change”. I liked the part at the end of the book where the author told the history of events and people she had based her book on.

amtolle

The Super Power I Would Love to Have

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Super powers that ability to do something that others can not to make the world better, safer for those living there. The word super power brings images of Super Man, Captain America or Iron Man. Someone with the ability to defeat the bad and make the world better.

The super power I would like to have is healing. I would love to be able to go into a hospital and have everyone walk out whole with perfect health, especially children. Children are beginning life and for some it turns out to be a short life.

I do realize there comes a time when we all must die, it is the cycle of life, a necessary part of being. But for children to be sick and or die, is hard. I love children and want them to have a happy childhood, learning things and about life. For some children they learn to face death before they learn about life. I wish oh how I wish I had the power to change this for them.

Each and every one of us were given today. We woke up alive. What are our plans? Where will we go? Will we smile? Do we call someone to say “I love you”?

I had a very dear older friend who did not want flowers or plants at her funeral. She said,” if you are going to send flowers to my funeral, give them to me now, so I may enjoy them while I am alive. I can not smell them when I am dead.”

The day is here, the day is short… make the most of it !

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Smell and share the roses.

amtolle

Passion and Causes

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“The world should be a better place because a person has lived” words the mother spoke to Little Lord Fauntleroy in the movie Little Lord Fauntleroy (the old version).

I some strong convictions on certain subjects, but I do not attend rallies or donate money to organizations. I feel most rallies are too black and white in their approach, you are either for or against. For example, this not for debate but example only, people who are vaccinated and the anti-vaccinators, where is the grey?

I do not consider myself on either side. I do feel any medical procedure, I should make the choice on what goes into my body and what does not.

I am not vaccinated. I get two responses when people learn I am not vaccinated.

“Oh, you are one of those anti-vaccinators who refuse to be vaccinated……”

or

“Good for you for standing up for your rights…”

The reason I am not vaccinated has nothing to do with either cause. There is a medical reason I am not vaccinated.

I feel most causes that are seen in the media are too black and white, with no room for the grey.

I am passionate and encourage people to educate themselves. The encouragement can be for higher education, learning a new hobby, learning a trade and to search out information not just take someone’s word for it.

At one time in my life I attended college to become a teacher. My desire was to teach mathematics and science. I feel these two subjects are presented in a format that causes students to hate them. While I was being a mother, attending college, I also had to work. I was working fast-food in the position of night manager. The crew I managed was almost entirely teenagers.

There was this one boy, in the same grade as my son and they were going to graduate that May provided they completed their classes with passing grades. Well, the boy I will call Peter, struggled with Math and was failing. Peter was very discouraged and was talking about dropping out. Peter is a senior, going to graduate in four months… what could cause him to drop out.. he was failing mathematics. I told him I would help, I would schedule our breaks together and tutor him in mathematics. So, we did. As he learned his attitude changed, his grade came up, and he was going to graduate.

I attended the graduation ceremony as my son was graduating. After the ceremony, I and my family were milling around on the football field with the other students and families, taking pictures, etc. When I was grabbed from behind and swung around and around. When this person put me down, I turned around to see who my “attacker” was, it was Peter. He we so excited, he pulled me towards his parents saying you have to meet them, you have to meet them.

I was dragged in front of two people who not giving any introduction, just gave me big hugs, thanking me profusely. I did not see or know the whole picture. When I agreed to help Peter learn mathematics to graduate, I thought I was helping one person. It turns out Peter was the first person to graduate from high school in his family… parents, older siblings, aunts, uncles and older cousins.

Peter went on with education becoming a paramedic then a smoke jumper. The last I heard from him, all four of his younger siblings graduated from high school and was taking additional education.

We do not realize what a smile, a word of encouragement or a kind gesture does for another person. We never see the whole picture of what the person is dealing with in a day. I make a point to show kindness, joy, encouragement and gratitude to people I meet and speak with. I want the world to be a better place, one kindness at a time.

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amtolle

One Life Lesson

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Bloganaury 14 we are asked to write concerning a life lesson we feel everyone can benefit from learning. There are several of life lessons I have had that could benefit others, patience, trust, forgiveness and others. Which one to choose.

I have lived a lot of life, some bad but I focus on the good. I did not automatically focus on the good in life, I had to teach myself to focus on the good. One event in my life was really bad and it left a large mark in my life. I named it “hell”. I defined “hell” as:

“Hell” greets me in the morning with the rising sun,

“Hell” shadows me during the day where ever I go,

“Hell” is ever present at every sunset,

“Hell” haunts the night and each of my dreams.

I developed a medical condition where I thought I was loosing my mind. My physician suggested a physiatrist while medical tests were performed. During a month visits with the physiatrist, I learned my hell had a name, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was not the only thing wrong with me, as there was a physical condition that required surgery to get me back to feeling better.

After the surgery many things changed mostly good. I married my husband and moved to another state.

We had lived in Texas for a few years, when I made a choice to have more out of life. I decided to see a counselor concerning the severe depression I was in. During the sessions with the counselor, I learned to focus on the good things in my life. I learned how to be in the present and now with mindfulness.

Learning to change ourselves is hard work. There were days I did not notice the “hell” that haunted me for years. And there were days that I could not get “hell” out of my thinking. With patience and persistence and a strong desire to change I am able to focus on what brings me joy. When “hell” would creep into my thoughts, I would think hard and focus and actively do something that brought joy.

It has been years since I have been to the counselor. But I still work everyday to focus on the present and now.

Today, I can fully enjoy the sunrise with the first glimmer of the sun’s face and not fear a shadow during my day. I enjoy the day and what it has to offer me. I relax watching the sunset without the fear of darkness or going to sleep fearing my “hell” will greet me in my dreams.

There are triggers that do bring my “hell” back. I have learned to be aware of the triggers. There are times I have to deal with my “hell”, but those times are getting fewer.

Not everyone suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, but everyone does have bad days and bad events in their day. Make the good that happened in the day the focus will make the bad events and the problems, not go away, but get smaller. And sometimes, we have to make the good happen, such as a simple action that brings joy. For me I go outside and simply brush the hair on my horse or rub on the young filly born this year. Sometimes it is hot chocolate.

Look for and create the good things in your life.

Amtolle

How does anyone live here?

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I lived between two extremes. The small town of Cortez, Colorado is located on the edge of the desert and San Juan mountains. I was a five minute drive to either extreme.

In 2009 I met my wonderful husband. Shortly after our marriage his job transferred him to north central Texas. I was excited to move to a new state and a new area, only I did not know how different it would be from the area I grew up in and lived in my whole life.

I enjoy many hobbies or activities. I garden. I love the feel of dirt touching my hands and fingers, moving the soil to cover seeds or roots. Garden soil smells good and life. I plant vegetables, flowers and herbs. I prepare and store the food that has grown by freezing or canning. Growing a garden is a part of who I am, the same with raising livestock. I just really love to grow plants and animals, watching them thrive and grow brings satisfaction to my inward self.

The place I live in Texas.

Where we relocated to in North Central Texas near Dallas/Fort Worth is green, lots of trees, bushes and vines. The winters are moderate with a week or two of freezing temperatures. The summers are hot and humid. The amount of plant growth was amazing to me, if plants grow like this without assistance, what would my garden be like. I imagined green plants, huge over size fruit and a vast number of fruit per plant. We moved in November, I planted my first garden in the first part of May.

The grass, weeds, vines and every other plant grows well without human assistance. I tilled up an area for my garden, I planted the seeds and plants. I watered it. Then I would pull weeds and unwanted plant growth every day. But, the grass, coastal grass, it grows under the ground, on top of the ground in long vine like tentacles. You can pull out of the ground, leave it on cement and if water gets to the grass it will grow on top of the cement until it finds dirt. Not through the cement but on top of cement. Those vine like tentacles would grow up my plants and weigh them down. My first garden there were no huge fruits, I had no fruits. There were no thriving plants….just coastal grass and weak garden plants. I grew beautiful gardens in a desert area, and I could not even get a plant to survive in a place with abundant plant growth. Frustration for sure set in.

Another very different change a I had to make was going outside barefoot. There is a phrase” In Texas it will bite you, sting you or stick you.” The phrase is so very true. The first time I stepped out with no shoes on, my foot soul was greeted with multiple sharp painful pricks. There are many plants with stickers. I looked at the ground to find out what plants the stickers came from and what to my amazing eye appear…… the ground was moving, literally with millions of insects. I learned the hard way to spray the ground I like to sit on with insect killer. I went to sit on the ground with my dog and play with her, I was covered in fleas.

I love to sit outside to think, meditate and just chill. Outside is the best place to be. One day I am sitting in the chair outside enjoying my morning coffee and suddenly a thud of something landing on the ground four feet in front of me. A black snake fell out of the tree. No more sitting under the trees.

I had moved to a place where the grass takes over everything, insects and spiders are everywhere, and snakes fall out of trees. I am terrified of snakes. ( on another blog I will share my Marilyn Monroe Moment in Texas). I was frustrated and unnerved the first year with all the challenges of Texas.

I do not give up easily. I read about coastal grass. Coastal grass is not native to the North American , it was brought into Texas for erosion control. They sprig plant coastal grass here. Which means they pull up the grass plant with a machine, let the sprigs dry, then spread, not till, just spread on top of the ground before it rains and it grows. With fertilization it provides a nutritious pasture and hay for livestock. I can raise ten times the number of animals per acre in Texas than I can in Colorado. I raise 50 head of ewes on twelve acres. This has a real benefit to me as a sheep farmer, my occupation.

I learned a new way to grow a garden using containers and raised garden beds. I still have to pull coastal out of my planters and raised garden beds, but I can stay ahead of the coastal grass. We have to treat the yard living area with herbicides for the stickers and insecticides for the insects. The dogs get regular flea bathes. I do not go barefoot outside anymore.

The first few years I hated our move to Texas. But I am not one to give up. I learned how to do things differently. I looked for the positive in the area. Such as I do not break ice twice a day on the water troughs for the livestock for four to five months. I can grow flowers and plants I only dreamed of having. I can have a garden ten months out of the year.

I overcame the frustration with education on what was frustrating me, such as coastal grass. And focused on what I gained, the milder winters and gardening ten months a year instead of four.

My game plan for any challenge is to identify the challenge, educate myself about what the challenge is and form a plan to have the challenge work to my advantage.

Amtolle