Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Fridge Magnets

A few months after my mother passed away, my father gave up traveling.  They were a traveling team, and I guess Dad just didn't want to do it on his own.  That's understandable, as my parents had been road junkies for as long as I can remember.

I still remember visiting Niagara Falls at the age of 3, and driving to Florida when I was 8.  In those days, Disney had ticket books for their rides.  Space Mountain was an E-Ticket, as I recall... Back then I-95 wasn't complete all the way through Florida, and you had to get off the Interstate and drive surface roads in some areas.  We didn't take Interstates all the time anyway, there were lots more interesting things on the back roads of America. If we never got off the Interstate, we never would have gone to Marineland, or Gatorland, or countless other bits of roadside America that are not built next to an exit ramp.

So, after my Dad stopped traveling, I tried to keep his interest in the road alive in different ways.  I'd buy him DVDs about Route 66 and National Parks, and when he started slowing down a bit I would buy him jigsaw puzzles to do, many with location themes.  On the occasions when I would travel somewhere, I started to buy him refrigerator magnets from the places I went, just so he would have a visual reminder of some of the places he and Mom had been (or not been). What else can you bring back for someone who has been damn near everywhere and already has a house full of stuff...

I was down at my Dad's house two weeks ago, packing up some of my stuff that was still there (he passed away in February).  After walking past his refrigerator a few dozen times that day, I decided to take those fridge magnets with me.  Some are at home on my refrigerator, some are now in my office (see photo above).  They are, oddly enough, not a reminder of the road for me, but rather a reminder of a life well lived.  And a man greatly missed...

No photography talk today, sorry.  just a reminder: If you're not having fun while you're out shooting, you're probably doing something wrong.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Russ. Amazingly well written and heartfelt as usual. <3