Tuesday, March 17, 2009

In With The Old, Week Nine

Monument Valley Sandstorm (September 2006)

I've been tagged twice with the "66 Photo" [my name] challenge:

•Go to your photo folder on your computer
•Go to the 6th folder of photos
•Go to the sixth picture
•Put the picture on your blog and a description of it
•Invite six friends to join the challenge
•Link them in your blog

I don't have *a* photo folder on my computer, I have several, depending on if they are originals, derivatives; If they are awaiting ingestion, key wording, editing, or archiving as per my standard workflow. But in an attempt to follow the spirit if not the letter of the challenge I've selected this image. It is the sixth image in the sixth folder of my "finished" images.

This is an image taken at Monument Valley in Arizona. You can see one of the mittens in the background. This was taken during a lull in a sand storm (which made for some nice photo ops). Let to right are my brother Jeff, my 'Uncle' John, my dad, and me (the camera ads ten pounds!).

We were in Monument Valley in Septmeber because we weren't there in April. We had planned to be there in April, but while at the Winter Star Party in February 2006 I got a phone call from my dad. He was apologetic as he told me we would need to postpone our trip. He had gone to the doctor that day and the doctor told him to go home and do absolutely nothing. The doctor also scheduled him for triple bypass surgery. That surgery would happen in April.

As you can see the surgery was a success. And we went on our trip. My dad is a big western movie buff. He and my 'Uncle' John (more on him later) have been traveling together for over ten years and have known each other since my dad was five (dad will be 80 this year). They've been to Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Hong Kong, India, Egypt, Israel, Russia, England, Scandinavia, the Baltics, Checkoslovakia, and most recently Hawaii this past February to visit John's son and his wife. But dad had never been to the American Southwest. So my brother and I decided to take him, and he invited his childhood pal. We started in Los Vegas, visited Meteor Crater, Petrified Forest/Painted Desert, Canyon de Chelly, Monument Valley, and the Grand Canyon. We had a great time. Dad was a little winded at times, but otherwise fine.

Dad is still doing well, and he will be traveling along with myself, my brother, and the rest of our families to Cabo San Lucas the first week of April.

The same cannot be said of 'Uncle' John. As you probably gathered from the scare quotes, Uncle John isn't really my uncle. He is my godfather. And my dad's oldest friend. And this week he moved into an assisted living home. Uncle John has Alzheimer’s. The trip to Hawaii was very difficult for my dad, as Uncle John could not take care of himself. To the point were he couldn't even buckle his seatbelt on the plane unassisted.

I saw Uncle John a couple of times after this trip, but this was the last time I spent any real time with him. I have a lot of great memories. But right now I feel very sad.


Chesney said...

What a great picture and description, Steve! Sounds like that trip was a lot of fun - I am glad you all had that time together! Sorry about your Uncle John - my grandmother had that and it isn't fun! Hey enjoy your time in Cabos - we went there a few years ago and it was the best!!

Danudin said...

It is terrific to see those four Monuments posing in front of Monument valley, great story and photo.