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 sixth 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 31, 2015

WANDERABOUT NEWS

... after a nice, albeit too short, visit in new jersey with phil and his family, it was on to wilmington, north carolina ... our first stop was the beach, where it took awhile to find the pier that was one of the goals of our journey ...

... i know absolutely nothing about it, but i'm assured that fans of "dawson's creek" will recognize this scene ...

 ... to me, of course, it was just a chance to play with perspective ...

... except for a couple of hardy wet-suited surfers, a few others on their own wanderabouts, and this interesting shore bird, we had the beach all to ourselves ...

... soon to be elbow-to-elbow with tourists and sun worshipers, even in a brisk wind it was nice to be able to enjoy the beach like this ...

... again, admitting to my ignorance, adrien informed me that the hordes of twenty-five year-old young women we encountered were reliving their teen years and brought to tears of joy as they stood in front of this particular door ...

... hidden away in one of wilmington's less developed neighborhoods, still we encountered others on their own "one tree hill" wanderabouts ...

... personally, i was much more impressed by the battleship u.s.s. north carolina proudly displaying her 15 world war II battle stars ...

... heading across north carolina we negotiated the twisty roads until we found "the road to nowhere" ...

... it was only a short hike from the car to the tunnel ...

... adrien celebrated, as is her way ...

... adrien then hiked to the end of this "broken promise" ... when the huge public works projects dammed up the rivers, the new lakes cut off access to the cemeteries where local residents' loved ones were buried ... the federal government promised to construct a road for access, but, after building only 12 miles, decided that it was "environmentally unsound" to complete the route ... the congress voted a settlement payment of $55,000,000 ... it still has not paid ... now, it seems, swain county, north carolina, has something in common with the native americans, bikini islanders, and many veterans ... [that's an editorial comment—i'll not apologize for it] ...

... for adrien, this is #48 ...

... in chattanooga, tennessee, we drove to the top of lookout mountain, where we enjoyed the beautiful view ...

... i climbed out onto one of the rocky outcroppings so adrien could scream at me, "you're crazy, dad" ...

... the land below the mountain was mostly farmland when the confederate and union armies fought desperately in the "battle in the clouds" ...

... now, all is peaceful ...

... families with picnic baskets, young lovers, and wanderers including adrien and me, we all shared this quiet moment with the ghosts ...

... the next day we descended 1,200 feet beneath lookout mountain to gaze upon the greatest subterranean waterfall in north america ...

... in 1928, after leo lambert had discovered that his expensive tunnel had cut into an 18-inch void in the limestone formation, and after he'd spent seventeen hours exploring the dark passage, on his second journey into the abyss he brought his wife with him to joy in his fabulous discovery, which he named "ruby falls" in her honor ... this, i like very much ...

... we chanced upon on of the mountain's feathered residents ...

... [okay, i admit it, it was a sculpture—but, still cool] ...

... "rock city's" unusual formations were fascinating ...

... and, once again, we thoroughly enjoyed the view ...

... i thought virginia might be a bit of a stretch, but on a perfectly clear day it is, according to surveyors and witnesses, visible from lookout mountain ...

... and, last but hardly least, having waited so long for winter to depart maine and new hampshire, this was a most welcome sight ...

... tonight was thunderstorms from the motel balcony as we cooked up our pasta on the camp stove ...

... what great fun ...