Things I want to remember from our Colorado trip:
- That moment at baggage claim when I turned to see a man swooping down on my children with his arms outstretched, and them scrambling into his hug as if they'd known each other all their lives.
- Playing soccer with a bunch of Ethiopians, most of whom are Burji.
- The freshly killed and cooked goat for D's 7th birthday (he now has a summer birthday, too). I'm a strict vegetarian, but this is what he wanted for his birthday, and this is what he got.
- M telling D, "You are Burji. You have a strong heart."
- NO ONE asking about our kids' names: "A__? You mean _____? D__? You mean _____?" the way most Ethiopians do.
- Our campsite in Rocky Mountain National Park. The mule deer walking through our campsite. Cooking over a campfire every night. The Milky Way.
- The high-altitude lakes. The COLD water in the streams feeding the lakes.
- Doing several leisurely walks with our kids, and then doing an actual hike with significant elevation gain. Rock climbing at the end of the hike. Note to self: Things go well on a long hike if I bring a chapter book to read aloud from every half mile or so.
- LOOK, ELK!!!!! WOW!!!! Look, elk! Cool! Look, elk. Meh.
- The aerial obstacle course that A completed in Estes Park. As my sister would say, "Dweam come twue."
- D terrified to ride a horse. D overcoming his terror. D telling me, "I am Burji. I have a strong heart."
- Vedauwoo State Park in Wyoming and the huge boulders that A and I climbed, just the two of us.
- Our gorgeous shortcut on a dirt "forest" road in southern Wyoming: huge sky, ranches, horses, pronghorns.
- My normally very calm husband yelling "EVERYBODY GET OUT OF THE CAR!!!!" because
the car was on firehe saw a bald eagle.
- Trail Ridge Road, the highest paved road in North America. Watching the temperature drop, feeling the wind pick up, and finally, seeing snow fall.
- D calming his anxiety by repeating country names over and over and over: MaliMauritaniaMalawiNigerNigeriaIndiaChinaKazakhstan BangladeshBangladeshBangladeshBangladeshBanGLAdesh BanGLAdeshBanGLAdesh... Not a good memory, but I should remember it.
- Back in Aurora, meeting another Burji man and discovering his mother is Gooda, which means that my kids are considered his "uncles."
- The weekend after we returned, D playing Monopoly with his cousin C, smiling with his eyes.