Tuesday, July 6

the most important pictures

The Robinson clan lost our patriarch earlier this year.  In preparation for his memorial service in California last month, I poured through my archives - digital and negative - for images of my grandfather.

In any given year, the ratio of assignment work to personal/familial images is staggering.  Among the millions of files, I came up with a few dozen of his face.  Those meant more to me than the soccer matches, holiday parades, dance recitals, portraits - the litany of daily work that I had so dutifully archived.

My favorite is a photo I took of him when I was just out of high school.  I was visiting California from Texas and we took a day trip to Half Moon Bay.  My grandfather, the progenitor of my sweet-tooth, ordered a root-beer float that wasn't on the menu.  "You have root-beer and ice cream, don't you?" he asked the waiter with his sly smile.  After haggling over the price of the new item, we settled in a window seat, victorious.

I knew it on some level before, but these are the most precious images to me.  The ones that pull love and memory from me at a glance.

We gathered in California to say one last 'aloha' to my grandfather - fleeting moments of togetherness for our far-flung family.

My father plays with his oldest granddaughter.

My brother and his youngest daughter en route to the 
memorial service on San Francisco Bay.

My brother tries on my grandfather's hat.

My niece plays with her great-grandmother.

1 comment:

  1. these will mean so much to lena someday. the photo of her finger on your grandfather's lips is so full of warmth and play. i don't know that i'd ever noticed it, but i see you in your grandfather's face. looks like you'll be carrying him around even without the pics.