Friday, July 29, 2016

I've Got a Fever- GARNET FEVER

Yesterday's Artistic Journal Entry- My Husband Digging For Garnets
I have often heard of the term "Gold Fever" referring to those men who sold everything, abandoned their families and their way of life back east to cross the rugged deserts, mountains and prairies just with the dream to strike it rich.  Very few did but that didn't seem to sway them from coming.  Nevada's very beginnings are steeped deep in the lure of riches that lie just below the surface.

Well, yesterday we were those driven individuals, picking and shoveling at the rocky hillside in search of the treasure that was surely there just below the surface.  Withstanding the blazing sun and temperatures reaching close to 95 degrees and yet there we were seeking a specific treasure.  We were hunting garnets at Garnet Hill Recreation Area just outside Ely, Nevada.  I can honestly say to you that I have wanted to come here for years and do just that.  

There was nothing else on my mind, eyes focused on the ground under my feet, looking for that unmistakable sparkle that was the tail tell sign of the gemstone that was there within my reach.  My husband digging and chipping away at the rocks with his shovel, pick and classifier.  It took us a short time to get our strategy in line and figure out just where the best place was to look.  And of course you would know that the best place for him was a steep climb up the hill, on loose limestone and for me, who is a person that you could call coordination challenged, the walking around was stressful.  Not to mention the sun beating down on me and that darn oppressive Nevada heat.  When I suggested that I had had about enough and that we head back to town and that amazing invention of air conditioning that awaited us in our travel camper, I was greeted with his unwelcomed reply, "Just a little longer."  I stared at this stranger that had the appearance of my husband of 37 years but It was as if he had been possessed by some strange garnet demon that required he keep looking for that "REALLY BIG ONE" that was surely in the next shovel full.  For a moment I was sure I saw his head spin around and his eyes flash purple but that was probably more the result of my overheated, dehydrated state.

We Cheated and Purchased This One

Of course I'm exaggerating this a bit.  We both had a great time and can't wait to return soon and continue our search.  We found about a dozen small specimens that we have floating in an old water bottle.  The largest garnet was the one I found, not at Garnet Hill, but rather at the Garnet Mercantile in the old downtown of Ely, Nevada.  I hope we find one this beautiful, but $10 seemed a small price to pay to have such a beautiful little treasure.

Looking back on the day as I was recording our experience in my artistic journal,  I was blessed with the realization that the real treasure was being together and enjoying the beauty that surrounded us.

The view from our digging spot.  That is the large cooper mine in the distance

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