Tarmac ribbons criss-crossing the landscape, dusty back roads twisting between the cool shadows of ancient pines, and less traveled pathways connecting present to past, all I wander, seeking, seeing, with my keyboard and camera capturing scenes and stories to share with you.

Now in its fifth year, this venue has become an important part of my life, a place where I can express my thoughts and feelings about the things I see and do, hoping the process brings me a bit closer to friends and family who enjoy sharing my sometimes chaotic and often nonlinear observations and ideas. A journal, I suppose, but one with which I find pleasure in thinking others are alongside me on my journey.

March 12, 2016

MY GRAMMY

... my grandma, elizabeth jackson ... i know she came to live with us while we were stationed at offutt air force base in nebraska, so i can positively date this color slide as being taken in the summer of 1964 ... dad was driving us to montreal to visit relatives ... stopped for a roadside picnic lunch, most likely this was taken in illinois or indiana ...

... my cayman grampy had died a couple of years earlier, in 1962, just we were packing the car to leave alaska ... our expedition down the alcan highway through the untamed yukon wilderness was to be of the greatest of my life's adventures, but looking back from an adult perspective i can see that for ma it was a time of great heartbreak ... i don't know the backstory to why gram left the island to come to nebraska to live with us, but i do remember that even as a little boy i could sense the great sadness she was dealing with ... of course, it goes without saying that i've also fond memories of my favorite coconut candy, cassava cake, and the many other wonderful caymanian treats she would cook up for us ...

... in montreal we drove up to the top of mont-royal to enjoy the scenic view, and pa snapped a shot of ma and gram ... pa must've been impatient, because in the original image gram's left hand was in mid-air above ma's shoulder ... after i had scanned and restored the faded color slide i framed a print for ma ... she was excited to see it, but i was surprised when in a little girl voice i'd never heard she asked, "i know you do things with your computer ... can you ... well, can you put her hand on my shoulder" ...

... the next time i visited i brought this version of the image ...

... when i gave it to her ma cried ...

... it was only then that i understood why so long ago during our great trek through the wilderness, while during each of our many rest breaks and overnight camps my brother and sister and i would play at the dark edge of that mysterious primeval forest, she would walk off to be away from us ...

... so i cried, too ... not for her loss, but in acknowledgement of another of the gifts i hadn't known she had given us ...

“Life is made up of many comings and goings and for everything that we take with us,
we must leave something behind.”
HERMAN RAUCHER

#600 - BUMBLEBEA

... journal entry #600 ...

... adrien, liz, and their cousin, rachel, came over with beatrix "bumblebea" to enjoy a spaghetti supper and an evening of great fun ... liz, in my opinion perhaps the most expressive reader in the world, brought a storybook to life for bumblebea ...

... adrien did likewise, but in her case it was a picture history of waterville ...

... like all her kind, bumblebea found my camera lens most fascinating ...

... kids this age, you needn't worry about fancy cooking ...

... liz and adrien made sure to teach bumblebea the proper way to eat pasta ...

... childrearing lesson #7, "never spend money when a cardboard box, paper towel tube, a bunch of tupperware containers, or a mouthful of spaghetti will achieve the same results" ...

... and, of course, all else fails just get the kid to play with their tongue ...

... bumblebea loved my weird chair ...

... when it came time to pose she knew just what to do ...

... mom and daughter and one shoe ...

“What heaven can be more real than to retain the spirit-world of childhood?” 
BEATRIX POTTER