Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Guest Writer Week: Bernard Ten Bears

Bernard Ten Bears has known me since the day that I was born.  For those of you who haven't figured it out, Bernard Ten Bears is my Uncle Bern.  Uncle Bern was the best Uncle any boy could have asked for.  He would take me to movies when I was a kid and when I became a teenager, in those years when nobody likes you, he was always there for me with spiritual advice.  He was also my camp counselor in the summer and served as an awesome friend and advisor to me and my friends.

It is from Uncle Bern that I get my love for all things old.  He's a picker and collector and taught me the value of old things and the old ways when I was a teenager.  He called me one day when I was 15 and asked me if I wanted to go "dump digging".  Didn't sound fun, but he explained that he was going to old farm dumps from the turn of the century to dig up old bottles, saws and whatever else he could find.  It became a fanatical hobby for me for awhile.  I can remember excavating a hill with him by hand in search for old artifacts.  We sat under the roots of a birch tree when the job was done.  I have rarely felt such satisfaction.

In addition, he is the person who got me interested in axes.  We were headed down through the woods one day with his pack basket and and old .45-70 to have tea in the middle of nowhere.  I saw his Snow and Nealley (on which he has scripture written - on the handle) and I fell in love.  Since then, I've tried to educate myself on axes and, whenever I have a question, he most usually has an answer.

He is a historian and can recite our family tree forwards, backwards and sideways.  This comes in what I consider, but he will deny, is a near-photographic memory.  He remembers conversations that we had when I was thirteen years old.

Bernard Ten Bears is my Uncle and I can't tell you how much I love him.  I could spend hours talking with him about anything from old stuff to the philosophy of life.  He is the best Uncle that any man could have ever asked for.  Please click the link in the upper left hand corner.  When you read his bio, you will have a true understanding of who he is.

Pax Domini Sit Semper Vobiscum,

Mike, Oscar, Hotel.....out.

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