Thursday, September 23, 2010
We got a gift this week from Andrew...his photos. My daughters decided to look at the memory card stored in Andrew's camera and found about 300 photos he had taken in the last year of his life.
The photos showed Andrew's work and projects and some of the scenery he so enjoyed being immersed in. He loved to hike and go off-road in his truck, and he skiied and surfed in the ocean nearby. He built things -- home improvement projects, his truck, a dog house, and he worked in his father's plastering business. Andrew was very proud of his patch jobs and his lathing and his straight, flat finished walls.
Looking through the photos, I naturally searched for some clues to what Andrew was thinking. He drove to the highest point he could on Cuesta Ridge and took pictures of all views: North, South, East and West. He went up the coast and took pictures north of Cayucos of the rocks and surf on the beach, showing Morro Rock, Montana de Oro and points north. He took pictures of the setting sun.
He also had pictures of his projects: his truck, the doghouse, a rock wall with the home address etched on it, and he took pictures of the pets at play. I think these dogs and a cat became his trusted companions when he no longer trusts the humans. He didn't read things into what the dogs did and he could say whatever he wanted to them without drawing strange looks back.
The hardest part is that everything looks so normal and, well, beautiful. The pictures are uplifting, not depressing. One wonders what he had been thinking, or if he went seeking peace and serenity and was trying not to think much at all.
My daughter had one of the pictures blown up and pressed on canvas like a painting. She made a place to hang it in the dining room and put up a stenciled saying, something about a miracle. It makes an really stunning display. The coolest part is knowing the point of view was Andrew's.