Friday, May 31, 2013

Vacation Time

This post is being written in the comforts of the United States. We've been in America for more than a week now and it has been wonderful! The boys have understandably had some culture shock. Gus spent the first few days asking for people from Moshi by name. (Where's Jonah? I want Thomas.) And Townes marveled at wonders like the elevator at the airport and all of the paved roads!

There will be more to report on from our trip home but I need to put up some pictures from our trip last month to Zanzibar! Because April is a low season for tourists, some hotels in Zanzibar had specials going for East African residents. Ahh, we had a fantastic trip!

Fishermen brought their catch to the beach in front of our place. We joined the cook to see what they'd caught. I'm sure that I later at some of that squid b/c I had seafood salad for lunch and dinner everyday!

Photo by Townes

All beaches have donkeys, right?

We have a similar picture involving Coy and Andy Block on a cannon in Morocco...can you walk past a cannon and not hop on?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Sam I Was

A new pet joined our ranks about a month ago.

He was quickly dubbed 'Sam' by Townes, presumably from our recent Dr Seuss kick. Unlike the green-egg yielding Sam, ours preferred to be left on his own.

We've encountered less friendly tortoises here. Buddies of ours have a turtle that will headbutt visiting children but he also nudges soccer balls around their yard. Sam was never as active. To find him we would just walk along the hedges until we could spot him nestled the shade.

Sadly, Sam ran away from home one day when I left the gate open. We searched the road up and down when we discovered he was gone but he must have had more gumption than we'd realized.

Townes was pretty upset about the loss and Gus comforted himself by dining with our remaining pet who was happy to have our full attention again.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


I recently took the boys to our friend's farm that is in a village in the foothills of Kili. We had been there before but wanted to return to check on his newest endeavor....bees! Townes had been asking questions about how honey is made so we decided to go and see for ourselves. (He's also been asking about paper and crayons and houses and helicopters and blood and volcanoes...I haven't come up with field trip ideas for the whole list yet. Ideas?)

I wasn't sure what to expect but they've put hives inside of wooden boxes and then left the bees to do their work. I'm planning on inviting ourselves out again when it's time to extract the honey! I was assured that these particular bees do not sting...Gus leaned in close but I wouldn't let him shake anything, just in case.

And that was the closest Gus got to any of the animals. I was surprised by how fearful he was of everything else! This 3-day old calf made him cling on to me and squeal:

He was enjoying the view from the door until one of the hens flapped up to greet him which left him in tears.

Our friend sent us home with a tray of eggs. Townes was so excited by this huge egg that he wanted to cook it up as soon as we got home. The thrill continued when we cracked it open to find TWO yolks inside!

I suppose we now know which brother inherited the Buckley farming genes!

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

We'll be comin' round the mountain....

While Coy braved the winter cold in DC, the boys and I went on an overnight hiking trip with friends! The Hash celebrated its 10th Anniversary by going to Rongai, a village where some people start their climbs of Kilimanjaro. It was about a 2-hour drive around Kili and the views were spectacular.

We stayed at a place that reminded me of Switzerland with its flowers and lush grass. (In fact, if you're reading this and you don't live in Africa or NYC, please take a moment and appreciate the grass that you see on a daily basis. February and March have been so hot and dry here that it feels like we're always covered in a layer of dust these days!) I was also excited to find the model for the cell phone towers that look like fake trees in the States-

The hike was enjoyable- pretty and not too brutal. Townes amazed me again by hiking the whole 2.5 hours on his own, albeit slowly! We were the last folks back to finish the hike but, thankfully, we had the company of another mom and her 4-year old.

Gus apparently needs to be sleeping in cold weather everynight b/c he slept 11 hours straight. I however had to step outside at 3am to shake some crickets out of the tree by my window. Have you ever heard crickets right next to your bed as you sleep? Unbelievably loud. I didn't actually think I would be able to get them to move but I had to try something and it worked!

Yes, it was a good weekend. But the boys were even more excited to see their daddy again:

The T-Rex from the Smithsonian was a big hit too!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Geo-Caching and Glamping

Coy is in DC this week for a conference but here's some pictures from recent adventures!

Our friend Marc Gregor discovered the fun of geo-caching while back in Paris. He was excited to continue to fun in TZ but had to create a treasure hunt for Townes after discovering the the actual geo-cache at the old train station was missing. He did a great job with clues and a terrific treasure.

We also tried our hand at family camping, sort of. The Kilimanjaro Mountain Club put on a trip near the national park in Arusha. We signed on when we realized that Townes and Coy could sleep in a tent while Gus and I slept nearby in a cabin! The campsite was actually just the grounds of a nice hotel who was low on tourists and willing to let our crew pop tents. Our plan is to tent again soon with all Buckleys in sleeping bags but this was a better start.

See, Gus looks ready!

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Nairobi Highlights

Before Christmas, we decided to head to the big city. The drive was about seven hours which our beast of a truck managed well. The kids did too which I suppose they deserve credit for...7 hours, no music or AC or fast food stops. Nairobi is now home to some friends we met in Ghana. She's working for the CDC and he's heading up a cool group called MicroEnsure. It was great to catch up and meet their sweet baby. Gus did them a favor by pointing out everything that needs to be babyproofed before Madigan learns to walk. (Sorry again about that wine glass!)

Though Coy and I enjoyed trying to make up for a year of not eating sushi by eating a year's worth in one night, the outings to the Elephant Orphanage and the Giraffe Sanctuary were probably the highlights for the boys:

If these spots look familiar, this may be why: Kenya, 2007

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Just Hanging Out

While waiting for Coy to return from hiking a volcano with a friend, I thought I'd post some pictures of things the boys and I have been enjoying.

Here they are keeping up with their new year's resolution for more upper body strength:

The rainy season came late this year so we've had plenty of opportunities to play in the mud and puddles.

I was amused when Townes came home from school with this elaborately decorated hat.

But the laugh continued a few days later when the weather had dipped to the low 70s and Townes asked, 'Mom, where's my hat? It's cold outside' and then popped it on his head and went out to play.