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 seventh 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.

Comments, thoughts, or just a friendly chat, use the response box below or email me at patrickgroleau@gmail.com.

March 3, 2020

WANDERABOUTING DOWNEAST

... john had an early evening planetarium show in brooklyn, and he asked me to make the rest of the day a downeast wanderabouting ... here's the pumpkin island light, taken from eggemoggin's rocky shoreline ...
    

... i really like the simplicity of this house ...
   

... in winter a low-tide rock crown ...
   
   
... this smooth glacial boulder, hatching out ...
   

      
... in some places the temporary ice was paper-thin, evidence of the [relatively] mild winter we've had so far ...
   
      
... evidence of the cataclysmic tectonic forces that shaped our landscape   ...
   
      
... fancy tutus for a minion ballet recital ...
   

... john, with his favorite super-duper lens perhaps spying a distant whale  ... me, i dropped my sorta-super almost-duper lens ... luckily, it landed on the built-in aluminum lens shade, and the resulting deformation absorbed all the energy so that lens itself and camera remained undamaged ... [sigh] ... another project to complete ...
   

... i'm thinking this little sand spit will be a good place to enjoy a long summer afternoon ... it's far enough from the "touristy" maine that i doubt i'll have a problem finding a spot ...
   
      
... the famous "million dollar bridge"...
   
 
... ice abstract ...
   
      
... sun descending in the east, time to go set up john's "bubble," a air-inflated portable planetarium ...
   
 
 ... my brother's up and walking after open-heart surgery, although exposed i didn't contract the type-b flu, i found the $70 i'd lost neatly washed in my trouser's change pocket ...

... cool ...

February 27, 2020

OF HEART VALVES AND DUCK PINS

 ... mike is healing up nicely ... !!! ... i used my phone to snap this photo the day before he went in to have his heart tuned up ... that's neftalie, one of my sorta-adopted siblings, cheering him up ... since then he's undergone a nine and one-half hour open-heart procedure, during which the doctors replaced a bunch of parts and patched up others that were a bit worn ... as of today he's conscious, beginning to talk, and most of the tubes they had running out of him have been removed ... he's a long recovery road ahead, but, for now, it's looking like if not exactly "brand-new" he's going to walk out in a "restored classic" condition ... 
  
   
... a self-portrait ...
   
   
... colby college, sunset from the home depot snow pile ...
   
   
... adrian's assistant takin' tea while the bread's baking ...
   
   
... ohhhhhhh, that burnt end, still oven warm slathered with creamy butter churned from the milk of irish cows—as john denver sang, "almost heaven" ...
   
   
... tessa, on the way to the playground ...
   

... if not the 2036 olympics, perhaps a ringling circus act ...
   
   
... stepping back, of the most difficult things a parent can do ...
   
   
... what a smile ...
   
   
... i believe that we should put up a great monument honoring whoever it was that invented the swingset ...
   

... daughter and ma and duck pins ...
   
   
... why bother with fancy amusement parks when you've an ancient duck pin alley within which to let loose your kid ...
   
   
... technique, that's what it's all about—that and a little ma nudge, too ...
   
   
... "mars rocket design 101," class begins ...
   
   
... absolutely, i wish it had been for a more normal visit with my brother that i had traveled down from maine to rhode island, but—well, as you can see, i'm not about to complain that i got a little preview of spring ...
   

... nevertheless the winter up north, however, i'm going to drive back to maine hummin' a happy tune 'cause my big brother's okay ...
   

February 16, 2020

TIMMMMBERRRRRR!

... an enterprising beaver had gnawed a tree alongside john's camp to the point that it was in danger of falling, so john asked me to tag along on a little forestry expedition ... a most charming location, perhaps made a bit more so by the fact that environmental protection laws require that new camps cannot ever again be located this close to the water's edge ...
   

... before beginning the festivities we took a little stroll out onto the frozen surface of the pond ... these two were on a trek to visit the ice fishers at near the far shore ...
    
    
... after getting his chain saw to work (not good to leave a 2-cycle engine unused for months), and cleaning up the lower limbs and tangle of brush at the base of the tree, john began to cut ... as he did so a group came over to enjoy the entertainment ...
   
    
... the beaver had done an efficient job, so after only a tiny bit of notching the tree came down ...
   
    
... one of the nice things about living in maine, neighbors came over to help john reduce the trunk to firewood ...
   
    
... delighted with the assistance, john happily allowed them the cut wood for their camp's fire pit ...
   
   
... after we wandered up to skowhegan to see the giant rotating "ice disk" spinning in the swirling waters where the water pours from the same narrow gorge that benedict arnold negotiated his troop through on their "ill-fated" march to quebec ... by the way, notice the suspended "widow maker," hopefully a town maintenance crew will remove it before it earns its name ...
    
 
... on a different note, this afternoon i completed the preparation of our model construction area ... i could have bought a really fancy paint booth for a few hundred dollars—right, as if—instead i built one from a heavy-duty cardboard box ... works perfect, using enamel paint there wasn't a hint of odor ... with the acrylic we're using, which is water based, i'll put a filter in front of the fan and we should be able to paint indoors ...
   
    
... construction begins ... !!! ... on the right is an untouched set of the pieces necessary to put together one of the car's wire wheels ... on the left is a bag containing a set that is fully prepped and ready for assembly and painting ... removing the pieces from the tree, trimming off excess plastic and mold marks, carefully drilling out the two deformed screw holes, sanding, and, finally, detergent scrubbing the parts with hot water, it took me almost an hour start to finish ... what fun ...
   
    
... danny and walker spent the night with me ... we had pizza, watched a movie, enjoyed pancakes and eggs and bacon for breakfast, then took a sunday morning drive to august for a wanderabout and lunch inside of sams club ... here's the kennebec river in augusta ... still open water, a sign of the relatively mild winter we've experienced so far this year ...
   

... so odd, that at one point in maine's history cutting and shipping that ice to places as far away as india was the most important segment of the state's economy (coming in second was the sawdust used to insulate the ice) ...
   

February 11, 2020

THE FUN BEGINS

... several years ago jon, roger, erik and i shared a nice wanderabout of new brunswick, nova scotia, and quebec on our motorcycles ... using my little point-and-shoot olympus, this is a snapshot i took at the fortress of louisbourg ... i decided to revisit it and find out if my skills in photoshop have improved ...
    

... many, many years ago i bought a pocher alfa romeo model ... the company went out of business years ago, so the highly detailed kits are in great demand both by builders and collectors ... i'd put my acquisition away as a "future project," and this winter i decided to make that so ... as i examined the model i decided that i had no great desire to do such things as assemble the internal workings of the engine, pistons, rings, crankshaft, etc. ... there was a time that i would have considered it a great challenge to work on such intricate details even if they would never be visible once the model was completed, but—well, i'll just say that my approach to this hobby is a bit more mature than it was as a teenager, so i sold the pocher on ebay ...

... roger decided to join me in the fun ... we spent a month selecting our models, while at the same time we set up and equipped a nice work area ...

... so many things've changed over the years—"acrylic" paint that cleans up with water and dries in a few hours, "super" glue that does away with the overnight waiting patience ordeal—yet, as i practiced on an old p-51 model, it seems my hands have fantastic skill memories ...

... roger's going to work on a tamiya model of a 1966 rc166 racing bike, a beautifully detailed kit of this 6-cylinder 250cc 18,000 rpm (!) screamer of a machine ... mine is a model that is equivalent to the pocher, minus the internal workings of the engine, an italeri model of a fiat 806 ... 

... both models are the same scale, 1/12, and that will add to the fun as we work on them side-by-side ...


... a zillion pieces, this ain't your aurora "snap-together" mustang kit ...
   

... beautiful plating, too bad it will have to be completely refinished ...
   

... upon examination i decided that in some ways the italeri kit is even more detailed than the pocher ...
   

... right, to paraphrase the bard, "here's the rub" ... the italeri kit is a plastic model formed using molds from a now-defunct company that had used them to pour white-metal models ... thus, well, you can see what i'm talking bout ... for this one piece, the body shell, just fixing the mold errors and flaws is going to require several hours of painstaking filling, filing, sanding, and buffing ...
   

... a few days ago jon had a snow day so we went for a little wanderabout ... a rather dreary afternoon, we decided that if we couldn't find any pictures we might as well go to the governors and eat pie ... (remember, there are few rules to wanderbouting) ... we did make a brief pause behind the home depot to catch the sunset outlining the colby chapel ...
   

... me, utilizing a giant pile of snow as a tripod, my own little homage to the movie "free solo" ...
   
COURTESY JOHN MEADER
 
   

January 31, 2020

WEEK 3 OF 2020

... yes, i did say "one entry per week" ... hmmmm, right, how about we consider that i'm going to try to average that, okay ...

... john and i made a little wanderabout down along the coast ... we found this really cool railroad spike sculpture near rockport ...
         
    
... temperature hovering around freezing, little wind, and the warmth of the sunshine made for a most pleasant mid-winter day along the coast ...
         
    
... john gifted me a little glass crystal ball ...
         
    
... sea ice was trying to form along the shore ...
         
    
... perhaps canada's desolate arctic coastline from low earth orbit—no, simply a tiny bit of ice melting in the sun atop a granite breakwater block ... fascinating ...
         
    
... just for fun ...
         
    
... hmmmm, do you think they've made their point ...
         
    
... hidden in the glade i spied upon the plaid-jacketed nutty-haired super-duper-lens guy ...
         
    
... in the little harbourside park across the street from camden's public library, edna st. vincent millay, a child of the little town who became a gift to the entire world ...
         
  
... here she is in 1914, photographed by arnold genthe, a great portrait photographer from the early 1900s ...
         
ARNOLD GENTHE
  
... i've always liked her words, of which some have inspired my photography ...
         
I see things with my own eyes,
just as if they were the first eyes that ever saw,
and then I set about to tell, as best I can,
just what I've seen.
EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY

... me, a quick snap by john using my semi-super-duper lens ...
         
    
... in the harbor, almost-ice water ...
         
    
... from a long ago age, a time when during the second game of a double-header it was easy to find an empty seat right alongside the dugout in fenway park ...
         
    
... not all that shabby, considering that i shot this little guy through the plastic screened window on bill's sunporch ...