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2005-06-18 - 10:41 a.m.

Yes!!! I definately feel a good week coming on!

Amy and I went down to the local casino for fathers day, the same one we won $375 on the quarter machine last time, and played in the same area on some quarter machines. Hers came up with 3 red 7s for $50.00 and while I was looking at them, mine came up with the 3 BIG WILD Symbols!! That's 6,000 quarters!! $1500 real U.S. dollars! We left and now I'm grilling up $100. worth of the best steak I could find and invested in $100. of wine. Yep 8 bottles of our favorite 2 buck chuck, and 4 real nice ones for tonight! I can't wait for this coming GREAT week!

I'm over it. Everythings back to normal. (Normal, what's that?) Check out my nice clean pool. See how the landscaping is maturing?

Today, the story of how I tried to figure out who I was. This story is especially for two fellow dlanders.

Caviat: Just hearing about my situation doesn't neccessarily make you feel better about yours. And no one asked me for advice, so pardon me in advance for hoping this will help you decide how to handle your situations.

When I was 17 I found a picture of me as a new baby. One thing was very curious, It had my birthdate on the back, but a different last name. I'd seen that picture before, so I knew it was me, but what's with the name? I went to my mother and said, " I think we need to talk."

I think it was a relief for her so she told me how my father was really my step-dad and how he adopted me at age two. My 3 brothers were half brothers and my real father had gotten her pregnant and then jetted. She gave me letters from him (to her) covering thier relationship and the few pictures she had of him including one of him holding me on Ocean Beach in San Francisco, the one time he saw me. He said he'd lived in the L.A. area and gave me a picture of him on a motorcycle.

I was curious, but as my family had always been my family, I mostly let it pass.

Five years later, in the midst of a major argument with my first wife, I decided on the spur of the moment to fly to Los Angeles and find my real dad.

I had phone numbers of all the HXXXX's in all the multiple southern california phone books. Strangely enough, the FIRST one I randomly picked went something like this:

"Hi, I'm looking for Paul Hxxx who is my father. I was born in Dec.1951 and believe he was born in Iowa about 19xx and moved to L.A. Does this sound familiar?"

"I think that you have the right number, but you want to talk to my husband. His father sounds like your father."

I spoke with Paul Jr. and found he was my older brother. I spoke with his mother, who had been married to my dad at the time, and she gave me a lead on my dad's sister, who strangely enough lived within 50 miles of me. I also found out he was dead of a motorcycle accident. That explained why my mother was so anti me getting a motorcycle.

I called my "new" aunt, and visited, meeting my 2 cousins.

Years went by, when I decided it was time to get back in touch with my Aunt. Harriet and Luigi treated us great, accepting me right away in spite of not really knowing anything about me.

As the years went by, we became quite close and I developed relationships with all of them and my nieces. My wife & children became part of this extended family also. I met an uncle and another aunt and another cousin over the years.

On a trip to the midwest I accidently met my aunts cousin, 85 years old and got those two back together again.

Along the way I lost contact with my older brother but found two younger brothers, nearly my age. (It turns out my dad was very prolific and knocked up every woman he met, married or not.) I saw the family home and learned the family history as well as researching that line back about 20 generations.

I recently met my nieces and grand nieces back in Iowa.

For me this has been like a story, because I was raised in a stable home with both parents it was like an added part of life. I like and accepted all these relatives. They have all accepted and liked my family as well .

Since my real father died so long ago (1956) I don't need to deal with any stress about him, in person. I just accept that he had some good qualities, (after all, women loved him!) and some bad qualities such as irresponsibilty and an inability to have a lasting relationship. Yet I'm richer with my brothers and the rest of that family.

My mother had to deal with her "real" father just showing up at our house one day, after 30 years of being absent. I just remember she was resentful that he thought he could just come by and say hi, as if the 30 years absence hadn't happened.

I believe these events are more the norm than we all realize. Look around Dland and see how many people have or came from "broken homes". It's only on TV and your relative's "edited for public consumption" life histories, that families are perfect enduring units .

I hope that all of you looking for your "roots" have as good as experiance as me. We each have our own backgrounds to factor in on what we hope to gain or learn from a family search.

Just remember, that nothing that happened in the past had anything to do with you! It was thier loss and finding them may be your gain!

I state it proudly, "Most people spend thier whole lives trying to be a bastard, but I was born one!"

Good Luck.

Love, Curiouoso*


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