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.

July 29, 2015

WANDERING

... from watkins glen we wandered up to utica ... jon seemed to be navigating our journey using the sun and maybe something to do with which side of the trees the moss was growing upon, thus i've absolutely no idea where in central new york this was taken ... there were cows, lots and lots of them ...

... saying goodbye to eric, jon and i cruised the adirondacks ... we twisted our way through the mountains, in passing offering our gratitude to the couple on the harley trike who so graciously diverted the attention of the local police ... just before the crossing into canada a giant thunderstorm appeared before us ... we decided to wait it out in a little town ... 

... we picked this little cafe for our hideout ...

... eric prepared for us an excellent meal [well, i think it was eric, seems i lost the little piece of paper with his name ... still, the food was great] ...

... jon kept track of the storm, "pat, it's just hanging around waiting for us to leave" ...

... we ended up doing a twenty-mile loop to avoid the storm, which, of course, then decided to just disappear as if it had never existed ... we crossed over the st. lawrence river on the ogdensburg-prescott international bridge, the entire 7,920 foot span a roadway of open metal-grating pure motorcycle hell  ... our motel was just behind the spot from where i took this picture, but we didn't notice it and ended up going back and forth along the river until we finally found it ... seems that the street address was changed from one town to another and the booking.com site didn't get the update ... !!! ...

... since the temperatures were pushing into the mid-90s, we decided to limit the time we spent in ottawa ... we stopped to visit the once super-secret canadian government cold-war underground "defense bunker" ... i'm sure that even as it was being build the russians had plans as detailed as this 3d model ...

... during a nuclear war this was to be one of the phones that would keep the government in contact with the world ... yea, right, as if anyone above ground was going to be picking up ...

... pa spent much of his military career working at one of these teletype machines ... when called in during the middle of the night to decode some seriously secret message he would take me or my brother or both of us with him ... he would push the key that rang a bell at similar machines all over the world, then type in the words, "this is frenchy ... this machine is unsecured ... my kid's sitting at it, amuse him"  ... thus, well ahead of the internet, the world-wide-web, email, chat, etc., in the late 1950s i e-conversed with the rest of the world ... [in your face steve, you too, bill] ...

... of course, for the end of human civilization one must be properly attired ...

... apparently it was important that no two locks had the same key, something to do with security ... hmmmmm, front door's locked, politicians are lined up to get in, at thousands of miles per hour a giant thermonuclear warhead is descending towards the bunker, "which key is it ... which key is it ... WHICH #@*%&# KEY IS IT" ...


... layers of absurdity, pile upon one another ... that this "secret" underground bunker (which during construction became public knowledge when a reporter noticed that for a "communications facility involving a few soldiers" 76 toilets had been delivered) was designed to survive a "near-miss" by a low-kiloton yield atomic bomb, when the russians made up for their lack of precision in targeting by hurling at it several megaton class thermonuclear h-bombs, each of which would create a crater deeper than the lowest level of the bunker, well, yes, absurdity ...

... but, that the government built a special vault within the bunker just for canada's money, a secure space with all sorts of special features to prevent thieves from using the end of human civilization as a distraction for breaking in to steal the cash ... well, as i said, absurdity upon absurdity ...

... at least canada is now publicly acknowledging what i've know since i was a player in the whole theatre of the absurd, that they, too, were on the stage with everyone else ... 

... jon asked me, "uncle pat, how much did all of this cost" ...

... in dollars and cents terms it's difficult to express it ... my estimation, without taking into consideration the number of human lives destroyed, the money spent on the "cold war" probably would've been enough to solve global hunger, create entirely new technologies that were earth-friendly, and, i'm sure, there would've even been enough left over to maybe build a city on mars and make it so jiffy-pop really worked like it does in the commercials ...

... what did it cost ... it cost the human race its sanity ...

... it's still questionable if we're going to recover anytime soon ...

... today life intruded upon our little wandering, and plans had to be changed [hopefully, to be revisited] ... tomorrow we head back to the u.s.a. ...