My family has a real rock psychosis. Maybe I should call it a fetish to be more polite, but I've always called a spade a spade and in this case, a rock a rock. I don't know exactly when or where it started, but my first recollection that something was amiss when I found out about my grandfather Ingalls' rock collection. When my daughter was a young girl, my mother and step-father would take her to Maine when they went. When she was about 8, she came back to Florida with tales of her great grandfather's rock collection.
He had asked her if she wanted to see his rock collection when they visited him. What she was expecting to see was small samples of various types of rocks, so when he opened the drawers in the room that housed his collection she was surprised by what she saw. All the drawers in the room were crammed full of rocks of all shapes and sizes he had found on the ground wherever he went in Maine. None of them were colorful or in any way special except to him. She concluded her story by telling me that he must be crazy. Although I did tell her it wasn't very nice to say that about anyone, in reality, she had hit the nail directly on the head. I was silently proud of my daughter for being so astute at such a young age.
As the fever grew and spread, my mother and my oldest brother developed the psychosis. My mother would bring rocks home for Maine to use as doorstops. I guess that was acceptable, but when I went to Maine one year and used the car she kept there to use during her extended stays, I found rocks in the trunk and under the front seats. All I could do was shake my head when I made the discovery. As my mother started her collection my oldest brother started building stone walls on his property at the same time. Everyone was quite impressed by all he had done. Everyone knows it takes a certain eye to be able to look at a rock elsewhere and know it's just the right shape and size to go in a certain spot in the wall you've been building. I think the fever really took hold of him when he skillfully lined the ditches in front of his house with rocks. It looked wonderful, but unfortunately, he was forced to remove all his ditch work due to some ordinance or something. Big Brother is always watching! I prefer to think it was probably some jealous neighbor who had rock envy who ratted him out.
Before the fever spread my way, the only rock I ever owned was a rather large piece of pink quartz. I owned that quartz for almost 40 years before the fever drifted my way. My psychosis wasn't as random as my mother's and grandfather's and certainly not as creative as my brother's, but I was very selective in which rocks I hauled back to Florida. They all had to come from a loved one's yard so each one would have good mojo in them. It was like bringing a part of that person back with me. My rocks found a new home in my flower garden. Unfortunately, Florida is rather barren where rocks are concerned, so I have to get my "rock fix" while traveling. After strategically stacking my rocks and closely scrutinizing the structure, I dubbed it "Old Lady With Sagging Breasts".