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.

May 26, 2019

PHALACROCORAX AURITUS

... after a day filled with chores, some of which were as boring as they were necessary, i grabbed my camera and headed out for a little evening wanderabout ... across the street from my apartment, i found a rather interesting composition ...
   

... usually I cross the 2ȼ-bridge first when i'm walking wanderabouting my little town, but i thought i'd live on the edge this time and stroll a counter-clockwise circuit ... i paused in the middle of the memorial bridge and enjoyed the view of an unseasonably high kennebec river cascading over the ticonic dam and falls ...
   

... from the south side of the span i noticed a huge gather of cormorants ... like the eagles in benton, i'm figuring the tasty alwives are their reason for congregating ...
   

... i spent almost an hour watching the birds fish ... i'd brought my nikkor 300mm f/4.5 ed lens, so i amused myself snapping pictures ... i knew my images would be nowhere near "audubon quality," for sure, but nevertheless i had great fun ...
   
   
... cormorants are rather heavy birds, so once they've adopted the proper posture for gliding  they remain quite rigid so as to maximize a rather low glide ratio ...
   
   
... they remind me of the a-10 "warthogs" flown by the army national guard ...
   
   
... as the sun descended towards the horizon the cormorants formed up and headed back to their homes for the evening ...
   
   
... a lone motorcycle rider cruised the pleasant evening, while a single gull soared along the shore beneath the old hathaway mill, perhaps seeking a bit of dessert before he, too, tucked himself in for the night ...
   
    
   
... where hundreds of workers once sewed high-quality dress shirts ...
   
   
... now awaiting development, or, perhaps, decay and demolition ...
   
   
... they look down to see the kennebec a dark lacing across the fading earth ... probably six miles away, another reason to be impressed with my ancient nikkor telephoto ...
   
   
... across the street from my apartment, a young bird sang the evening happy ...
  

Jonathan Seagull discovered that boredom and fear and anger
are the reasons that a gull's life is so short,
and with those gone from his thought,
he lived a long fine life indeed.
   

RICHARD BACH

May 25, 2019

EAGLES & OSPREY


... liz joined me and we drove over to below the dam in benton to do a little eagle watching ... 
  

... last year we counted 150 eagles in this spot, and we estimated that there were the same number hidden in the trees ... not so many right now, but i think the numbers'll increase as the water flow diminishes ...
  

... this is what draws the birds, alwives, an anadromous member of the herring family ... every year since the dam was removed in winslow they have been returning to their ancestral homes to spawn, and in response the eagles, herons, and osprey have resumed their traditional feeding behaviors ... 


... it's fascinating to watch the birds as they rocket across the surface of the stream in search of the tasty alwives ... 
  

... eagles eat anything, even carrion, while the osprey are very choosy and will dine only on live fish ... 
  

... i took most of these shots from a distance using my [ancient] 300mm f/4.5 ed nikkor telephoto ... manual exposure, manual focus, i'd say i bought it because it's "classic" but in truth it's what i could afford ... still, it's clear that thirty years hasn't diminished its capabilities ... most of these pictures were shot at i.s.o. 800-1200, then cropped down to about 30% of the original ... hopefully, in a few days i'll be able to get some close-up shots of these fascinating creatures ...
  

... some work hard, some don't, seems the avian world isn't all that different from ours ... 
  


May 21, 2019

OH, THE THINKS YOU CAN THINK

Congratulations!
Today is your day.
You're off to Great Places!
You're off and away!

THEODORE GEISEL

... my brother and i shared a little wanderabout this afternoon ... we ended up in springfield, massachusetts, where we once lived a long time ago ... after checking out the mgm grand casino (yes, turns out all casinos are pretty much the same), donating $13 in as many minutes, and enjoying some tasty mexican food, we drove a few blocks to the springfield museum complex ... when i was in high school this collection of both fancy and classic buildings was simply a place we could cut through while avoiding the truant officer ...
   
  
... a sword scabbard made from a single elephant tusk ... fascinating, but i'm glad they don't do this anymore ...
   
   
  
... the right face is "normal," while i've a feeling the one on the left is after being poked in the belly with a samurai sword ...
   
  
... some of the earliest japanese "fire-arms" ...
   
  
... i can't imagine carrying and shooting the one in the center of the picture ...
   
  
... samurai swords, exquisite, absolutely, but it turns out that their "superiority" is more a myth than fact ...
   
  
... mostly for show, i imagine ...
   
  
... my brother was intrigued by the exhibits ...
   
  
... it turns out that if rich people can't buy art they desire they have copies made ... this leads to the question, "where does stolen art disappear to" ...
   
  
... nefertiti ... in ancient eqypt she and her husband were considered radical/crazy for worshiping a single god ...
   
  
... in the center of the museum complex is the "dr. seuss national memorial sculpture garden" ... theodor geisel is one of the most famous alumni of my high school, classical ... the statues were done by his daughter ...
   
  
... "i am the lorax, i speak for the trees" ... dr. seuss spoke for all of us ...

Think left and think right and think low and think high.
Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!
   
  
... inherently unstable, the "granville brothers model r super sportster" (GB Racer) was a deathtrap to all but the most skilled pilots ... in 1932, with jimmy doolittle at its controls, it reached a speed of 296 miles-per-hour which was a world record for land planes ... cycling to work at my swimming pool i used to pass the mall that had been built upon the runway from which it once rocketed into the sky ...
   
  
... this machine, too, probably set some records ...
   
  
... an all-electric "motorcycle of the future" ... in 1976 its developers promised that it would be "on the market within a year" ...
   
  
... fifty years ago, which, yes, is exactly one-half century, i stood on these steps protesting the war in viet nam ... okay, so mostly i sat and enjoyed the fashion of the day, mini-skirts ... (yea, i hear you ... right, it wasn't exactly fashion that interested me) ... classical high school, one of the oldest secondary schools in america, has now become a community of rather posh looking condominiums ... i was a bit saddened by this ... i don't know why, but i was ...
   
  
... yet, so nice, i was also most appreciative i felt this way ...


“Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”

THEODORE GEISEL

... p.s. "seuss" is one of the most mispronounced names in the english language

May 19, 2019

EMILY & BERNARD MARRY

... emily, daughter of catherine and gerry menard, my good friends from way-way back in our college days, was married this evening in newport, rhode island ... something's seriously wrong with the math, of course, since there's just no way the state would issue a marriage licence to a little girl ... i'll figure it as soon as i can manage to accept that her brother's forty, a number my daughter informed me is going to arrive for her next year, also ... oh, my, how i hate math ...

... since i was a guest it was a luxury for me to just snap pictures for fun ... i began with a old-time shot of the harbor ...
   

... the weather was perfect for a seaside wedding ...
   

... quite fascinating, that while i've a modern sony a7ii dslr, the lens i used was the same one with which i took photographs on film at her brother's wedding ... yea, i know, more math ... i had fun shooting knowing i was going to process the images in a more "classic" style ...
   

... bernhard seemed to be having a grand time ...
   

... emily's pa, my friend and college roommate, gerry ...
   

... i remember when emily was a little girl like her niece ...
   

... more father-of-the-bride joy ...
   
   

... the band was one of the best i've ever enjoyed ...
   

... i believe bernhard's pa created this  ...
   

... my observation, em and bernhard share the meaning of the word "fun" ...
   
     

... after an excellent meal the dance floor was packed ...
   

... a beautiful spot on the shore of narraganset bay ...
    

... a wonderful couple, a wonderful evening, the beginning of what i am sure is going to be a most wonderful marriage ...
   
   


NOTE:  THESE ARE WEB-QUALITY VERSIONS.  I WILL GIVE EM THE FULL PRINT-QUALITY FILES.