Monday, April 14, 2014


Camille is kind of a big deal.  She had an appointment with the FBI on Friday.  I am not authorized to go into the details, but she now walks around wearing this t-shirt.

The FBI headquarters are in the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi.  We decided to pack up the baby and have a Nairobi weekend.  First stop, the Embassy!  Whoa, did they have some security at the U.S. Embassy.  They literally had to make a few phone calls to allow Eric in the building, since he wasn’t on their approved list.  He received his own I.D. badge.  He wore it proudly.  After Camille finished her conference call with Obam…um, I mean finished her mundane work, we jetted into the city.  

Afterwards, a soldier with a large gun nicely told us we were not allowed to take this picture. 
Highlights of the trip:

The Baby Elephant Orphanage.  The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust created a haven for baby elephants just outside Nairobi.  90% of the orphans are due to poaching.  Elephants rely on their mother’s milk for two years or they will die.  Visit this link to see a moving video on the plight of elephants.  I wrote previously about the desecration of rhinos in Africa and the lavish rhino tusk trade in Vietnam.  The bottom line is that the ivory trade should be outlawed.  As this New York Times editorial states, America is the second largest market for ivory in the world.  President Obama proposed legislation in February banning all elephant ivory trade in the U.S., and legislators in New York support banning all ivory sales in New York State.  Elephants feel grief, they cry, and they bury their dead.  Please find a substitute to ivory. 
We watched and petted baby elephants!  They played soccer, nuzzled with each other, and seemed to have specific friendships within the group.   

Eric was really jealous of those bottles
According to Camille, elephants feel "warm and squishy."

See the tiny hidden baby?

Eric, of course, seemed more interested with playing with the rope by the area surrounding zero elephants.  Also, if he had a choice between the real elephants and the elephant statue outside of the grocery store, Nakumat, he would choose the statue.  He loves the statue.

Eric, the elephants are the other way!
Dad, you should try playing with this rope.
LOVED this statue.
The Giraffe Center. BUT, Eric would first choose the giraffe center.  The highpoint of our weekend was Eric feeding the giraffe and shrieking in delight.  Just awesome.    

This was fun.

Giraffes have hard horns and rough, drooly tongues
Wait, come back!

At first Camille was really scared of the giraffes.  She was like:

But then she was like:

She warms up fast.  

Nairobi National Park.  Baboons are fond of Eric. 

They made each other yawn.


Hi, Mommy
One of my favorites.

Some shelter pics from last week.

He somehow tied this huge beetle to a string.  With help, he eventually let it go.

Some of my 4th graders

Some 2nd graders.

I'm just trying to get some work done.  Typical.

  Some randomness:

Eric, catching up on his reading on the ride home from Nairobi.
This enormous bug jumped on a resident's head during dinner.  She wasn't thrilled. 


A tired little guy after a day of playing with elephants and giraffes.
Our journey continues.  Thank you for reading!


  1. Big bug. ;-/ Cute animals! Adorable Eric. :) Wow those boys like to pose for the camera!

    1. Hi Zhao Hui! The boys don't get their pictures taken very often ;). Thanks for you comment, and I hope you had a great time in Costa Rica!

  2. Just one question... Could Eric possibly get any cuter?? Great pictures of you all!

    1. Thanks, Kelly! Eric magically does seem to keep getting cuter :).

      Say hi to the family for me!


  3. wow---a great job with this blog---ERIC IS THE BEST----I AM VERY HAPPY AND PROUD OF YOU GUYS--HAPPY EASTER

  4. I just loved the pictures in your blog this week, especially you surrounded by your students in the classroom. Obviously, your students are engaged and very participatory! Want to hear more about C and the FBI - later...... Commentary on the elephants is so insightful - always thought they were intelligent loving animals, wish more would see them this way and stop the abuse. Eric - growing and cuter all the time. Love, MOM

  5. Adorable! I love both of those places (Elephant Orphanage and Giraffe Center), I'm glad you guys were able to visit them! :) It's fun to see your photos. :)