August 1, 2011
Richard Barnett’s marriage to Opal Patricia Dunn in Kingsville, Texas on February 19 totally eclipses his other achievements this year. Opal and Richard took a week off for their honeymoon before moving Opal’s effects to Wimberley.
After settling down, Opal and Richard spent most of May traveling. They visited relatives on both sides in the Dallas area before driving to Colorado, where they visited old friends, stayed at the Navigators’ Glen Eyrie castle in Colorado Springs, and rode the cogwheel train up to Pike’s Peak. Richard attended the 2011 Colorado Christian Writers Conference in Estes Park while Opal relaxed by the fireside during snowfalls or enjoyed the scenery and wildlife. Following the conference, we took a flight to Washington State, where we visited my sister. We toured the Columbia River Valley and Mt. St. Helens, which are prime geological attractions.
The wildlife here in Central Texas lacks the subtropical diversity and color of Opal’s home in Kingsville, where javelinas trotted down the lane behind her house at night and green jays and orchard orioles sang in the daytime. She has a continuous aerial circus of hummingbirds to entertain her, however, and white-tailed deer saunter through the neighborhood at will. Opal used to be the resident expert at dispatching rattlesnakes in Kingsville, but they don’t visit us. Wimberley has a diligent contingent of roadrunners to keep them at bay.
Fringe benefits of being a geologist in the Hill Country include activities as a Texas Master Naturalist and serving as a docent with the Gorge Preservation Society in Canyon Lake, Texas. GPS conducts tours of the gorge gouged out by a 6-week overflow of the lake in 2002. It’s a remarkable outdoor laboratory for geologists, hydrologists, botanists, and ecologists. Please use my Canyon Gorge link to obtain information about public tours.
Richard continues as an active member of the Christian Writers Group of Greater San Antonio and other writers’ groups. CWGGSA maintains an active Facebook presence with occasional contributions by Richard. His attendance at CCWC in Estes Park resulted in positive leads toward publication of his works in progress. He will attend the Texas Christian Writers Conference in Houston, Texas on August 6.