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.

December 23, 2016

WANDERING RI

... i noticed these two outside rasa indian restaurant in east greenwich ...

... after lunch my brother and i stopped to see if grampa's name was on the new police memorial ... it was, which, of course, is proper, but we still haven't been able to figure out the criteria of "deceased, active and retired" that produced the rest of the listing ...

... late at night on february 20, 2003, i was returning to rhode island from a visit with my nephew, jon, in ohio, when i heard on the radio that there had been a large fire in west warwick ... it was late and i was tired, so when i got to my brother's house (he and his wife were away on vacation) i immediately went to bed ... it was the next morning that i learned the extent of the great tragedy that had taken place at the station nightclub a few miles away on cowesett avenue ...

... this part of the memorial sits directly above what was the foundation of the building, within which 100 people died and 230 were injured in the fire ...

... even after well over a hundred million dollars of settlement money, it has taken over thirteen years for the memorial to reach this stage of construction ... finally, however, it appears it will soon be completed ...

... blocks of cut stone where firefighters, arriving within minutes from their station only a few hundred yards up the street, could do naught but watch helplessly as the building was consumed by the explosively propagating flames ... to this day many of the first responders remain traumatized by their memories of the screams and cries that came from within the building ...

... piece by piece a place of remembrance is emerging ...

... marco, on the left, invited me into the off-limits construction area, "come inside, you can take pictures better" ... he and the other workers had accents that to me hinted they might have been born in far distant lands ... the worker on the right, i've forgotten his name, quite proudly remarked, "it's going to be a very, very beautiful when it's finished ... a very nice place for the people" ... i listened to them, and, even more, i marveled at this place we call "america" ...
 

... when i was a very small child the building was a restaurant ... my parents would cart me along to it in the evening after it had closed so they could play cards with the owner ... during the games i would sit beneath the table and make forts for my tiny soldiers using pots and pans from the kitchen ...

... how strange, so very, very strange, the circle of life can be ...

... soon, there will be faces and names to join the spirits inhabiting this place ...

... and, despite what in my opinion remains coverup, denial, and quite obvious legislated obfuscation of responsibility and justice, sometime next summer this will be a place that accepts tears and welcomes peace ...

... i picked up jon at the airport ... after lunch we had an hour before his appointment with the optometrist, so we wandered over to the big river management area ...

... as we strolled along the abandoned highway that crosses the carr river we saw signs warning that it was hunting season ... jon was a tiny bit nervous since we weren't wearing blaze orange ... i was unconcerned, happy that the soft sound of the cascading water was gently washing away some of the thoughts remaining from my visit to the station memorial ...

... remembering the movie "lord of the rings," i decided i didn't want to walk by this tree in the dark of night ...

... layers of light, ending my day ...