— The amazing people I work with.
I thank the good lord for my parents. My father and mother deserve great credit for having raised us (me and my five siblings) with a most unique perspective on life. We all are non-conformist bohemians who value independence, free thought and the pursuit of knowledge. Looking back over my years I realize that what drives me is intricately linked to my parents. My mother instilled in me a great love for learning and my father a great love of nature and travel. Both taught us about hard work and perseverance.
Today even after hundreds of expeditions around the world the thrill of discovery never ceases. Each day that the god gives promises me to be another one of full of intrigue. I would not be who I am without the influence of hundreds of souls who have taught me, who have listened to me, who have criticized me and who have been generous with their time and friendship. If I succeed at carrying the torch and bringing my passion to others—so that they too stand in awe at the wonders of nature—I will feel that all the effort will have been worth it!
My little brother is one hell of a man. It is hard to explain why he is so unique, but I will try. Unlike me, Patrick has a heart of gold for all. The underdog homeless man and the rich man are equal in his eyes and he proves it. I cannot even begin to tell you how many times the rest of us sit and wait for Patty to finish a conversation with someone! Almost everyone he meets somehow becomes a friend. Patrick leaves such an impression on people that even people who have met him once remember him and ask about him. Patty pierces the hearts of people with his sincerity… he really cares. Top that with his audacious looks (girls swoon for him), and his “life force” and you have one unusual character indeed.
Patty started going on expeditions with me decades ago, but it has only been in the last 8 years that he has truly become a global explorer in his own right. After traveling to countries as diverse as Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Botswana, Australia, Peru, Colombia, Panama, Dominican Republic and Namibia Patty has really made a name for himself as an explorer. He has discovered species new to science (still waiting to be described and named) and he has made expeditions to some of the most dangerous jungles on earth. His favorite? An expedition into the deep treacherous jungles of the Darien Gap in search of an only recently described new palm; the magnificent and appropriately named, Sabinaria magnifica.
Our brother-in-law Jake, has been a part of the family for most of his life. I first encountered Jake when he was at my house visiting. I had already started the life of being a traveler and was back home from college. Jake was super interested in my travels and he would ask questions. Years went by and he had his chance to join us.
One of the first trips that Jake took was a solo trip to Kenya. I bought him an airplane ticket, set him up with some equipment and wished him the best. Jake ended up living in a travelers camp on the outskirts of Nairobi. The place he stayed was famous among backpackers; the wonderful domain of Ma Roche. Ma Roche was beloved by all, she took Jake under her arm and helped him out just like she did with so many of her guests. Jake’s most vivid memory of Nairobi has nothing to do with a matronly polish woman, rather it has to do with him being chased with a madman wielding a machete. Jake has been on expeditions all over the world with Team Simcox and a trip with out Jake is like a trip without sunshine!