I get occasional email from folks out there who wonder how important the book (Thrill of the Chase) is in finding Forrest’s treasure. Why they write asking me about this is always a surprise. I mean it’s not like I’ve figured out all the hints and found the treasure. Seems like a better option would be to go right to the source and ask the only guy who really knows the answer to that question.
It turns out that many folks do. Forrest shared a couple of emails with me on this topic so I can share them with you. That way we all have the same information. It’s one way of getting the word out. So here goes…
This is a note sent to him just a couple of weeks ago. Names have been changed so no one will yell at me.
Dear Mr. Fenn,
We are a group of avid elderly bridge players in San Diego who after reading your book hope to find your treasure. We are not into poetry as much as the memoir. We realize the clues are in the poem, but were wondering if there isn’t at least one clue in each chapter.
Thank you for a great book
Forrest’s succinct response:
All of the information you need to find the treasure is in the poem. The chapters in my book have very subtle hints but are not deliberately placed to aid the seeker. Good luck in the search. f
In the past, Forrest has stated that the poem has all the information a person needs to find the treasure. But this email adds clarity to that message by saying that the book isn’t necessary. Its clues are subtle and apparently unintentional. He didn’t even deliberately place clues to the treasure in the book. Maybe that’s true but I think anyone searching for the treasure would be foolish not to know as much as possible about the man that hid it. There are most certainly clues in that book not only to the treasure but also to the interests, likes and dislikes of Forrest who made this great hunt possible. Besides, some money from each book goes to help someone with cancer pay their bills…
My advice is..get the book…and read it cover to cover…
Maybe we all need to take the approach of this writer.
Dear Mr. Fenn
In my last email I thanked you for writing this book but did not really explain why I felt this way. I believe everyone must work hard for the things they want in life but everyone needs a dream to hang on to. I lost my husband several years ago and although my sons are grown men I want them to learn its ok to have a dream,
I have shared my book with them as well as I belong to a group that is working on the book.
For me its does not matter if I find the treasure It’s more about the fun of the hunt.
I will not lie finding the treasure would make my life easier, as well as give me a chance to improve our small town one room library. But then that all falls in to the dream. But as I said before Thank You for writing the book and putting a dream out there.
Forrest say’s that letters like this one above make it all worthwhile for him.They probably make it a lot more worthwhile than letters like the following.
Dear Mr. Fenn,
You would not believe the day I just had, after staying up all night studying your memoir. After having stayed up all night the night before.
I decided to go and get my bearings and follow my hunch, and lo, the river was not snowed in. There followed two trips to the summit above your spot looking for water high (I was thinking springs) followed by a dunking in the river, before I realized the folly of my ways. No matter how fit anyone may be, those two trips to the high-country ridge had my heart pounding and the sweat pouring. I saw a deer kill, and I swear I felt a mountain lion…
Needless to say, this has been an utterly unbelievable journey, filled with twists and turns and stupefying synchronicities. No movie could ever do it justice. I found your missing ball of string, in pieces I am sorry to say! I am stout-hearted, but I found myself fearful when it came to extracting your chest from the spot on the bank. I don’t want to damage anything, because I ‘ll probably have to use a pick on the rocks. If I can prove to you decisively that I know the exact spot, will you help me with the logistics?
I am sitting where some of your story began. My cell is ###-#### if you care to call.
Thank you for the white knuckles!
You’ve got me scared now because I was hoping the chest would not be found for at least a couple of years. I don’t dare call you for fear of giving you a coordinate or some other useful clue. Please let me know if you find the treasure. f
Am I the only person that senses the sarcasm in Forrest’s response? I’m pretty sure he doesn’t trust this guy to find his britches with both hands. Forrest, of course, enjoys playing with him as if he were a trout.
There are a lot folks who truly appreciate what Forrest has done not only with his treasure…but also with his life. As in this note from Jim.
Wow a fighter pilot. Must have been scary times. I hate seeing our nation suffering now too. Hey I wanted to ask u kind of a favor. If u can’t do it I understand. But I would Rilke to send you a check to your shop and maybe you can sign your book and send it to me? The reason is how much you inspire me, also so I can tell the story to my son and when he’s older we can go on the adventure together. That would be neat wouldn’t it? Well if you don’t wanna do that it’s ok, I’ll buy your book anyways. But I thought its worth a try to ask. talk to ya soon. I hope.
Finally, this lovely quote from Forrest. I think it explains why he hid the treasure in the first place.
If I cannot enrich those with whom I interact each day and cause them to be better for my having passed their view, then I have wasted my turn. That I succeed in that endeavor is not as important as it is for me to make a solid try. For if the try is sincere I have succeeded in whatever failure resulted.
Like Betty wrote..He’s giving us all a dream with the Thrill of the Chase…