Two Friends, Sand, Pool, Pizza, Ice Cream and Water Pistols supplied by their friend Gazi - all the right ingredients for a memorable birthday in Dakar. Of course, friends from home were missed (and others here who were gone as is always the case during the holidays), but that's all Parker and Addison wanted for a grand birthday celebration here in Africa (wow)!. They picked taking their friends to 'our oasis' for simple reasons - their friends Gazi and Amadou - classmates who live in the neighborhood so it was an easy thing to meet up and walk to the pool, there is no clean up on our part, and it's just a fun place to go with alot of clean open space to run around. It was a balmy 80 degrees and would you believe these 4 boys had the entire pool and beach to themselves from the time we arrived at 1 until we left at about 6. Okay, it was Saturday, Dec 24th (their birthday) and it being Christmas Eve day things were quiet around town. However, we've noticed in the last month - end of November and all of December - the population of people coming to the pool has precipitously dropped. We asked why and it turns out people find the weather kind of "chilly" now. Certainly not a show stopper for these boys! WHAT? Okay we all have our 'internal thermometers' but I have to say this is paradise - a slight breeze, clear sunny skies, yeah the pool feels colder but you warm up fast and relaxing in those lounge chairs is a dream. Even little lizards like parties too! (and won't turn away from a pizza scrap with ham when tossed towards them). The finale (unfortunately) to what turned out to be a great day happened just 5 minutes before Manning and I were saying maybe it was time to pack it up - Parker fell on the stairs between the beach and the pool - with a hard hit to his eye area - producing a beautiful shiner that he would not let me post but you will certainly see the residual in future blog episodes. He's doing great!