essay: what I did for my birthday week

Harrison, you might wanna listen up here, 'cause you're gonna wish you had a birthday like mine. Well, except for the end, which gets kinda scary.
First? M. took me to the butterfly pavilion, which is like this big greenhouse full of jungle plants. And butterflies, of course. There were also praying mantis and hissing cockroaches and you could have a tarantula crawl on your hand, but M. was too chicken, so no tarantulas.

Here's me. Hi, Harrison!

Like I said: jungle-y.

Here's me pointing to a turtledove. A pretty white turtledove that was sitting in the rafters, just waiting to pick off those amazing butterflies. Or that's my guess as to what he/she was doing there. Hey, a dove's gotta eat, too!

This butterfly got wet, and needed to dry off before it could fly again. It decided that the best way to do that was by climbing up M.'s leg during the lecture on butterfly habits. The butterfly lady had strictly forbidden us to touch any butterflies with our hands (it damages their wings. Remember that, Harrison, next time you see a butterfly!) so M. couldn't do much about it.

...still climbing...

...still climbing! See it just below his right knee?

Never fear, Mike managed to convince that butterfly to climb off onto this leaf, where it quickly dried itself by beating its wings furiously.

There were red butterflies, yellow butterflies, orange butterflies, metallic blue butterflies that looked like their wings were made of tinfoil...butterflies that looked like twigs or leaves or even flowers. Some of them, when they stayed still, looked like they had huge eyes on their wings!
So anyway...there were butterflies.
And then we went into another room, and they shrank us.

Yup, they shrank us right down as small as crumbs. The worst part about that was that the room was full of giant red ants!!!! Boy, Harrison, was your uncle in a pickle!

Fortunately, the ants were busy fighting with one another, and we thought fast and hunkered down behind a big log, so they didn't get us.

They didn't get us...but then as we were running away a HUGE scorpion snuck out of the grass stalks and snapped its claws right at my head! Boy, that was a close one. Look at those claws! Good thing I was running so fast.

Just when we thought we were safe, a little girl who was walking by said, "Hey, mister, LOOK OUT BEHIND YOU!!"

This is your uncle M. screaming like a teenage girl. But you can hardly blame him, because there was a GIANT PRAYING MANTIS directly behind him. He hadn't even seen it because it blends in with the foliage.
Fortunately, we all lived.
And then we went to a farm to pet some hedgehogs.
That's right, I said PET SOME HEDGEHOGS!
But, Harrison, your aunt M. was so overexcited to see the hedgehogs that she forgot her camera in the car.
So, no hedgehog pictures.
...More birthday shenanigans to come. Stay tuned!


Vivian M said...

Awesome, totally cool and wonderful...but I would have run at the mention of bugs (shivers)!
You are so brave!

Chrissie Larkin said...

HARRISON LOVES THIS!!! As I hope you could tell!!! Thank you so much for a great story which made our morning!!!

Maryam in Marrakesh said...

What darling pics of you...you have such beautiful cheekbones and cool sneakers:)

PS I am a sometimes journalist, too. Who do you write for?

Carrie&Aaron said...

That is so cool! cute story for Harrison!

Juliette said...

Just love the last pictures with all the butterflies, beauty!
And love the photo-reportage, what's next?

krj said...

What a great way to celebrate your bday. I love love love our local butterfly museum and rain forest...

Yoli said...

What a magical place to be at!!! I love it! The whole tale was very funny, specially of uncle Mike screaming like a teenage girl!

I have to visit that place one day.

Rony said...

So, you're an Aquarius too?! My birthday was the 13th.

Heather said...

Glad you made it out alive!