A shout out to all my friends….you KNOW who you are!

Rockies from Highway 22

Rockies from Highway 22 (Photo credit: Chris & Lara Pawluk)

You can’t do this crap alone.

For a freelance photojournalist I hit a milestone today. I have images coming out in three different magazines in three different states this month.

One in Alaska, one in Arizona and one in Idaho.

That might not sound like such a big deal to you, but in the rough and tumble world of freelance photojournalistm it’s a rare feat.

Yes, there are images by shooters everyday that are picked up by newspapers and magazines all over America. But they’re picked up by the wire services (or internet agency) and scattered to the winds.

For an individual, freelance, photojournalist to get images in three separate, unrelated magazines in the same month is kind of like a baseball pitcher that has a perfect game — it’s not unheard of, it just doesn’t happen that often.

Tonight standing out on the balcony with my ever present cup of coffee and cigarette I got to thinking about my trifecta and it really hit home — I could’ve have done this without you.

Last year I was woring in 22 different states. From North Carolina to California and Arizona to Washington state and many places inbetween.

I’ve put alot of miles on this old body and met hundreds of people. Many of them gave me a meal or several, a safe, warm bed to sleep in, a pack or two of smokes and kept my coffee cup filled. You know who you are…I don’t want to leave anyone out so I won’t mention anyone by name — I hope you understand.

Life on the road the way I live it can get lonely. Late night bus rides that break down in Laramie, WY; stranded in the Rockies for three days with no food and no water; hanging out with the miners in West Virginia; going to a Navy game in Annapolis, MD; surviving a buffalo stampede in Eusick, Washington and more. It’s been a ride and many of you have kept me company through emails and the internet.

And you did more. When all of my gear was stolen in February, many of you stepped up to the plate and few some dollars into the tip jar to help replace what was stolen and several of you even sent me gear to use. Again, you know who you are.

One person I cannot keep from thanking personally is my bride, Ale. She’s followed the journey all over America. She was worried when I was tossed into the Colorado River and scared when I was in the Sonorran Desert. She was my lifeline when I was stranded in the Rockies and she was the inspiration to get me through another gig so many times when I just wanted to call it quits. She’s a helluva woman and I thank the Creator each morning for allowing her to walk with me on this journey called life.

Everyone has been so kind, hepful and supportive. It’s appreciated more than words can say. At times like this, mere words cannot express my appreciation for all you have done, but until they come up with something better, you’ll just have to settle for a heartfelt THANK YOU!

Me? I’m going to go out to the balcony, smoke my cigarette and finish this cup of coffee.

Then I’ll be back online and be my old grumpy, tempermental, opinionated self — with much appreciation in my heart for each of you.

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