Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Charles Darwin! (you too Abe!)

Today, Feb 12, 2009, marks the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth. (Since Abe Lincoln celebrated his big birthday -his centennial- two years ago so we're going to focus on Charlie today.)

Wow, that's really interesting, Kat, but what does this have to do with Adoption?? Well.... back in 2002 I got to take (and by "got to take" I mean-was laid off and thought this trip was the best way to spend my limited savings) one of my Life Long Dream Trips to Ecuador which included a 12 day live-aboard boat trip around the Galapagos Islands.

And it was perfect and wonderful and I now dream of taking my husband and children there one day. I mean Seriously Dream About It. I have already bought the children's book We're Sailing to Galapagos! and I often browse airfares to Guayaquil, Ecuador (the jumping off spot for the islands).

Below are a few of my own pictures from Galapagos but if you want to see more photos of the wonderfully weird animals that helped inspire Darwin's theories go here (fun photos for kids). And if you want to know more about the Charles Darwin Foundation, which was set up to help preserve the unique environment of the Galapagos Archipelago then go here -- the CDF is a truly cool organization. I bought my own copy of Voyage of the Beagle at the CDF headquarters.

And if you want to see it all in person than simply GO! But go responsibly... Galapagos is beginning to fall apart due to its own popularity. So if you decide to visit make sure you pick an eco-friendly and responsible group. The islands are worth seeing and saving. (and here ends my personal PSA :-)

I toured Galapagos on the Samba, the lovely 12 person boat pictured above. My, she was yar. We had a wonderful crew and bilingual naturalist who taught us everything we could want to know about Galapagos. Every day we went ashore a different island and every night the Samba rocked us asleep. FYI: I am at my happiest when I can go to sleep on a boat.

I had dreamed my whole life of seeing these animals... and they did not disappoint!
The Galapagos Frigate

Marine Iguanas --weird looking and yet wonderfully lovable at the same time. Until they spit on you. Just like children... Also like children, they have no personal space issues at all. I love how they just pile on top of each other.

Ah, the most famous Galapagos resident: The Blue Footed Boobie.

I loved the Blue Footed Boobie so much I brought this tee shirt back for my quasi-godson. His mom (rightly so I imagine) wouldn't let him wear it to school but nevertheless the shirt inspired him to love the BF Boobie as much as I do.

So happy birthday Mr Darwin...and you too President Lincoln!



  1. Such a great post! I was just [humph]r'ing to my husband this morning about Darwin being skipped and all this Lincoln to Obama drama...

    oh, and I would have let your quasi-godson wear the shirt...

    I am guessing that is probably why I am not a mom yet...

  2. I love the BF Boobies too - always have!!
    The Galapagos has always been on my 'see before I die' list! Needless to say I'm totally and completely jealous!

    Happy Birthday Charlie!

  3. Where can I get that shirt (in a women's medium)?

    PS I've always wanted to do the Chile/Galapagos, Argentina/Antarctica circuit. That way I can say "I've been to every continent except Australia."

    My loathing for Australia(ns) is legendary, flatfooted platypus notwithstanding. I could tell some stories about some wankers.

  4. I probably shouldn't have said that out loud.