For the Love of Penguins

IMG_4878There’s just something about penguins.

In her post, “the things you do for penguins,” Karen Jane Barlow describes the harrowing adventures she had in Tierra del Fuego — braving freezing temperatures and violent waves — in order to visit a penguin colony.IMG_1525

People will do a lot for penguins. “Play with penguins” is actually a pretty typical entry for a bucket list.  Because penguins are cute! Especially when they are not biting you.  (They are much less cute when they are actively biting you.)

Now when I travel with Nani Sinha, I know that birds will (literally) flock IMG_4891to her.  She just has a knack with birds.  In addition to being a first-rate opera singer, she has a special bond with her feathered friends. Nani loves birds and birds love Nani. But when she reached out to a nice-looking penguin at Boulders Beach, he tried to take her finger off with his sharp little beak.  Fortunately, Nani has good reflexes. (Nani 1, Penguin 0)

But even after that little kerfuffle, we still thought the penguins were adorable. (Nani is also very forgiving.) So if you ever get a chance to visit South Africa, go to the Cape Peninsula and watch the cute little guys scrambling IMG_1532around the granite boulders of Boulders Beach.

Penguins are inspiring. After all, they do very well at the box office.  Whether it’s the tap-dancing penguin from “Happy Feet” or the melancholy pilgrims in “March of the Penguins,” these little tuxedo-birds always capture the imagination.

After watching wild penguins play on the beach, I felt like I was living in a movie narrated by Samuel L. Jackson.  So I turned on my iPhone video camera. Check out my fabulous cinematography here.  (Yes, our star videographer, Carolyn, had already flown back to L.A. before we arrived at Boulders Beach and that’s why you have to suffer through my crazy camera angles):

It was just a great day at the beach, and nice ending to our opera festival. I’d definitely do it again.

All for the love of penguins.

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