Falling Whistles Tour

Africa is a CRAZY place!  The country I grew up in, which was once called the Belgian Congo, then became Zaire, and is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo…is home to the worlds deadliest war.  Cami & I are big supporters of an amazing organization called Falling Whistles.  We will be hosting, helping, and photographing their event in Charleston during the nation-wide tour this fall.  Yves, the amazing individual in this video, will be one of the folks we’ll be hosting.  I hope you’ll plan on attending one of the events November 15-17 to hear his story…and find out how you can be a whistle-blower for peace.

Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader?

My good friend and fellow photographer, Liz Duren, asked me to come and speak to her daughter’s 5th grade class about my experience growing up in Africa.  I love that show “Are you Smarter than a Fifth Grader?”…which I surely am NOT!!!  So I was a little nervous.  J  But Daphne was so sweet and gave me a big fun hug when I arrived at James B. Edwards Elementary School.  I felt better after that!  Daphne introduced me to everyone to put me at ease.  The kids really seemed interested and had LOTS of questions.  I had a BLAST!  In between giggles I taught them a couple words in Kituba.  Plus they got a kick out of my authentic chief’s sword.  Here’s a few pics Liz took for me… 



My good friend, Eric, shared this with me. He and I attended TASOK together in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. And since Cami and I just returned from our trip to Tanzania, this rendition of Toto’s “Africa” by Perpetuum Jazzile, an a cappella jazz choir from Slovenia, is quite poignant. Enjoy!


The Ngorongoro Crater

After we left Arusha, we headed strait into the Ngorongoro Crater. It’s not actually a crater left behind by some ancient meteor as some scientists originally believed. It’s actually the world’s largest unbroken, unflooded volcanic caldera…formed when a giant volcano exploded and collapsed on itself some two to three million years ago.

Based on fossil evidence found at the nearby Olduvai Gorge, we known that various hominid species have occupied the area for 3 million years. Aside from herds of zebra, gazelle, and wildebeest, the crater is home to the “Big Five” (rhinoceros, lion, leopard, elephant, and buffalo), which we saw within our first two days! An estimated 25,000 animals live within the crater, almost every known species of East African Wildlife. Notably absent are giraffes, impala, and crocodiles. But it does boast the densest known population of lions, thought we actually saw more later in the Serengeti…which I’ll share when I get to them. 🙂

The Ngorongoro Crater is often called the Eighth Wonder of the World!