This is Patrick. He got called Clifford a lot because, well, he IS a dog, and he IS red, so it was an innocent mis-naming; he doesn’t fit the BIG part, though. Patrick was bought in Cairo by some dear friends and given to our youngest son, Coen, when he was born in August, 2003. A bit of Coen’s story is HERE and HERE. Coen enjoyed Patrick and also a lion that another dear friend gave us at that time. Really, there were several small animals that Coen liked having around him most of the time. Patrick made the trip back to America with us in October of that year when Coen had to come here for some medical work. He then traveled back overseas with all of us to several other destinations. He spent a lot of time in car seats and luggage and logged almost as many miles as we did. Patrick accompanied us back to the States in January, 2005; that was our last trip as a family of 5. Since that trip, Patrick has always been pretty close by. We took him back to North Africa in October, 2005, although Coen was no longer with us. Patrick returned to Mississippi once more in December of 2006, when we moved back to the U.S. and stayed. These days Patrick resides on a bookshelf in our bedroom, perched on top of some of Tracey’s economics books. He hasn’t flown in nearly 7 years.
That’s about to change! Patrick’s days of lounging around, absorbing the Taylor theorem and reading Ronald H. Coase, are coming to an end. He’s dusting off his passport and getting ready to take a really long trip. This time he’ll log some miles traveling West rather than East. No layovers in Paris, Amsterdam, or Milan for him. This trip he’ll likely start in a familiar airport but will end up in Beijing. And instead of just hanging out in luggage, he’s about to become playmate to a beautiful little girl named , our daughter, Ella Claire. She lives in China for now but will soon be home with us. If you follow our blog (do that HERE), you have read the parts of her story that we have posted so far. Ella Claire and Coen share several things…Coen was born with Down syndrome as was Ella Claire; Coen had heart surgeries to repair the issues that are common in kids with Down syndrome—his surgeries were at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Claire had similar surgery in China; Coen was a blessing to two adults that loved him dearly, Claire is also; and Coen loved this little red dog named Patrick, we kinda hope Claire will, too. And, as you might have guessed, Ella Claire and Patrick share something in common…Patrick was ‘born’ in China, too. Patrick from China to Coen in Cairo to Claire from China.