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.

February 24, 2013

ARCTIC GOONEY BIRD


WITTNAUER FESTIVAL-STEINER 45MM-EKTACHROME AERIAL ISO50
... it was always most exciting when pa would take me with him onto the flightline at elmendorf air force base ... we'd stop at the security station where he'd show his badge and exchange words with the guard on duty ... (of course, such conversation usually included the exchange of "wheelin' and dealin'" items) ... pa would then clamp a checkered safety flag on the roof rack and say to me, "duck down until we're out away from the maintenance hangers" ... what a joy it was to see up close the machines of my dreams ... noisy b-47s, low-slung b-57s, "connies," c-97s and kc-97s, arrow-like f-102 "delta daggers," and, sometimes, a glimpse of a super-secret early version of the rc-135 spy plane ... here, warming up its pratt and whitney radials, is one of my favorites, a c-47 "skytrain" ... over 10,000 of these planes were manufactured ... it is remarkable that although the last c-47 left the factory at the end of world war II in 1945, to this day there are still a great many of these airplanes around the world flying regular passenger and cargo routes ...

SISTER SUE SUFFERIN'


UNKNOWN CAMERA-UNKNOWN FILM
... pa took this picture while we were living in alaska, probably in 1959 or 1960 ... today, while watching both the snowstorm and the daytona 500, i was doing some slide-scanning experimenting ... i've been removing some of the more severely damaged/faded slides from their mounts and cleaning the them with reagent grade methanol ... encased in one of pa's hand-pressed cardboard mounts, at first this image appeared to be another of his improperly fixed aerial ektachrome transparencies ... it was a surprise when i discovered it to be a square of unperforated film, hand cut to fit the mount ... the thinness of the emulsion leads me to believe that it was originally roll film, perhaps 127 size ... to give you an idea of what i had to work with, here's an unprocessed scan of the original ...


UNKNOWN CAMERA-UNKNOWN FILM
... for the final version i used only filters such as color correction, contrast, scratch/dust removal, etc., and did not do any hand spotting or corrections ...

... sue's arm is broken ... my bet would be that this picture was taken soon after the accident, since my recollection is that eventually she did not allow the cast to slow her down (except, that is, when it came to getting out of her chores) ...

A LITTLE BROWNIE


WITTNAUER FESTIVAL-STEINER 45MM-EKTACHROME AERIAL ISO50
... my sister, sue, in nunaka valley, alaska ... 1960 or 1961 ... she was such a tiny little girl, yet i remember how in any of our routine staring contests each of us thought ourselves lucky if we could last even a minute against her ...


AT ATTENTION


WITTNAUER FESTIVAL-STEINER 45MM-EKTACHROME AERIAL ASA 50
... i sometimes think that at a very early point in his life my brother figured out that women "go for a man in uniform" ... mike, following in pa's footsteps, was a scout's scout, and as his little brother i always greatly admired the skill and pride with which he carried on the tradition ...