Gwyn's e-mails

From: "Guy"
To: "Judith A Boelts"
Subject: Penguin Project
Date: Thursday, September 14, 2000 11:00 PM

Dear Mrs. Boelts,
My name is Guy Wooles and I have just recently graduated from the University of the West of England, Bristol, in Fine Art in Context (BA Hons). Since October 1999 I have been working with penguins, not the feathered kind but the paper kind, exploring conservation and wildlife protection issues. My final year project (and one that I am determined to continue with) involves sending sculpted paper penguins around the world to document different lifestyles and cultures.

The first penguin to go travelling was Dennis. Dennis is currently assisting Dave Houston, a ranger for the Department of Conservation in New Zealand, and has been there since last October and shows no sign of wanting to come home (I don't blame him it's chucking it down outside).

Since Dennis there have been numerous penguin adventures including Hong Kong, New York, Canada and Bristol Zoo. All these 'residencies' have been compiled and presented on a website that I created specifically for this work.

My intentions are to raise awareness to the issues that can be found within the work such as conservation, waste and wildlife protection. I want to approach them using humour, not with a wagging finger, as I believe that humour is far more effective especially with children.

I wish to establish a network of 'paper penguin' residencies (not necessarily permanent) around the world in locations of conservation, ecological and educational importance, that will send back documentation (in the form of e-mail) and photographs. The information of each penguin's experiences of the culture and lifestyle of their location would then be published on the website.

The reason I am writing to you (as you've probably guessed) is to ask whether you would be willing to take one of these penguins for a short while or know of somebody who would? I already have a penguin in a school in Hong kong and am eager to encourage another of my penguins into teaching. They are very well behaved (well, usually), rarely moult and are completely house-trained.

Information on my work so far can be found on the website www.khern.freeserve.co.uk. At the moment the website is under review because it was set up as part of my final year project and needs to be redesigned due to the progress of the work. As far as I know this art work is unique (nobody else is as disturbed) and has great potential. I am currently trying to get a penguin to the North Pole but can't seem to find any research station info.

If you have any questions or want to contact the university regarding my work please don't hesitate to ask.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Thank you for your time.
Guy Wooles


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: penguins
Date: Wednesday, October 11, 2000 4:59 PM

Hello
I am an educator in Fairbanks,Alaska. I teach 4th grade and we have a partner class of 2nd graders. We are interested in your penguin project.
I tried to pull up your website but it is not coming through. Any suggestions?
I wanted more information about it before making a commitment.

Thanks!
Sincerely,
Lorre Oxman

"Some succeed because they are destined to, but most because they are determined to."


From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Re: penguins
Date: Thursday, October 26, 2000 4:20 PM

Dear Lorre,
Thanks for your reply to my e-mail. I can't think why you are having trouble accessing my website maybe it's the browser you are using or your ISP. Have you tried using somebody else's computer?
I'll give you a brief account of what the project and the website is all about.

My intention is to create a site that is fun and educational as well as being environmentally informative. The penguins give an insight into different cultures and lifestyles around the world and will hopefully raise awareness of the fragility of life and the need to educate people to protect it.

The site at the moment is not focussed enough and needs to be more committed to the issues that it was designed for.
Throughout the coming months I hope to send more penguins off to relevant hosts thus developing the site into a far more educational and environmentally friendly body of work. The hosts will be encouraged to use the site to bring attention to the work or issues that they are involved in - from a penguin's perspective, obviously.

Should you agree to take one of my ever so friendly and cute penguins it would be nice to have a section that describes the work you, as a teacher, are involved in (especially environmentally). This would give people, and children, an opportunity to see what other organisations are doing - a glimpse into a different culture or way of life.

I already have a penguin (Scott) in a school in Hong Kong but, unfortunately, the information received back has only been in photographic form and doesn't record the work that the school is doing.

I don't want to interfere with your teaching schedule. What you do with your penguin is entirely up to you and I am happy to go along with what you decide. This is what the project is all about - as little interference from me as possible thereby getting a true record of life in a school in Alaska.
You might even want to take the penguin on personally and turn it into a record of the life of a teacher in a school in Alaska!
As you can see, only do what you want to do. All I ask is that you record the experiences of the penguin and keep me updated as to the progress of the penguin.

I hope that the information I have given is what you need and that you will agree to take an eager penguin 'under your wing' as your teaching assistant.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

All the best
Guy


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: Re: penguins
Date: Thursday, October 26, 2000 6:16 PM

Dear Guy,
It was great to hear from you. I haven't tried your website again, but now that I've heard back from you, I'll try again.

Alaska is one of those places where the environment plays a HUGE part in the daily living of everyone who chooses to live here. Whether it is a Native American,University student, soldier, or union worker, we are all impacted by our environment. Mostly because of severe weather and sub zero temperatures in a very long, dark winter.
As an educator, we all try to teach our students ways to protect the environment and the wildlife. Alaska is still considered to be one of the most PRISTINE areas in North America and the people who live here want to keep it that way.

There have been many decisions made concerning our environment over the years. One big one was the Trans Alaska Pipeline. This 800 mile pipeline had to be built under strict guidelines protecting migration routes of caribou, reindeer, and buffalo. Not one speck of oil should be dropped on the surface or the company is fined. Tremendous amount of precautions are still being made daily concerning the pipeline.
The Exxon Valdez disaster was truly painful for all Alaskans and many have paid a dear price for what happened.

Anyway, The University of Alaska Fairbanks has the Geophysical Institute here. There are great things going on. This could be your connection to the North Pole. I'm sure we can get you there.
The Poker Flats Research Station studies the activity of the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). We have an Experimental Farm and Musk Ox Reasearch Station. Our short growing season provides experimentation in growing HUGE vegetables. There is so much that is unique about our area.

The military plays a very large role in protecting our environment also. We have one Army and one AirForce base in our area alone. Alaska fits inside a map of the entire Unite States.
It is culturally rich in people, wildlife, resources and landforms. I think your penguin would enjoy his visit and my partner teacher and I promise to fill you with all kinds of information about Alaska.

Is there a picture of a penguin on your website?
What does it look like and how big is it?

Sincerely,
Lorre Oxman

"Some succeed because they are destined to, but most because they are determined to."



From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Penguin visit
Date: Friday, October 27, 2000 1:36 PM

Dear Lorre,
Thanks a lot for your prompt reply.
The more I hear about it the more I am convinced that Alaska is an ideal place for one of my penguins to visit.

There are many pictures of my penguins on the website. Each one is unique so there is no standard penguin size or shape but they tend not to be more than 12 to 16 inches tall due to the complications of posting.
Each is made of newspaper and no attempt has been made to paint them to look like the living thing.
In using newspaper the penguins are made up of people's histories and stories documenting life whether it be good or bad. So by sending my penguins around the world I am giving them a history and life all of their own.

There are many issues to be discovered in my penguins but at the moment I am concentrating on the environmental ones and hoping that the others will become apparent through the ongoing work. I will attach a picture of Dennis who is currently working with Dave Houston. Dave is a ranger for the Department of Conservation in Oamaru, New Zealand.

I haven't asked them who would like to go so I don't know which penguin you will be receiving. I'm sure to have many disappointed penguins when I make my decision but I will choose the most worthy and well behaved one to send to you.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Take care
Guy
X


From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Penguin travels
Date: Thursday, November 09, 2000 3:14 PM

Dear Lorre,
Just a quick note to update you on the penguin situation. I recently received notification of a paper penguin expedition to the North Pole in March. I have a penguin here frantically packing his rucksack for the journey. I have secured a post as teaching assistant for one of my penguins at Pearl City High School in Hawaii. Ted, who will be working with the penguin, has also given me a contact name and address for someone at the South Pole. So, hopefully, the wish for a penguin at each end of the earth might come true - though I won't hold my breath.
All I need now is an address to send one of my penguins off to Alaska.
I will let you know who to expect nearer the departure date. So if you could send me your address I will organise the travel details immediately.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Take care
Guy


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: Re: Penguin travels
Date: Thursday, November 09, 2000 6:55 PM

Dear Guy,
It was great to hear from you. I'm sorry I haven't written but we're at the end of a grading period and conferencing with parents. Very busy time! Anyway, my partner teacher and I haven't been able to sit down and make plans yet, hopefully, this Friday we can do that. I wanted to send you a plan of what we intend to do, so that you know your penguin's visit will be most rewarding and full of Alaskan adventure.
How long is a residency for a penguin? We want to involve the entire school and celebrate our penguin's arrival. We kind of thought of a slogan like "Penguin Power". We will be studying penguins first then expanding our knowledge and making connections into conservation and Alaskan cultures. Students will be writing journals and their stories will be written, hopefully, through the eyes of our penguin.

I was able to access your website finally. You really seem like a very fun and imaginative person. I think what you're doing is very creative. We are excited, although I haven't told my students yet. I'm waiting for dates, etc. As soon as we finalize some plans, I'll keep you posted.

If your North Pole connection doesn't work, try logging on to the Geophysical Institute here in Fairbanks.

Take Care.
Lorre

"Some succeed because they are destined to, but most because they are determined to."


From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Gwyn
Date: Thursday, November 30, 2000 11:25 PM

Dear Lorre,
I haven't heard anything from you for a while. I hope you're o.k.
I thought I'd send a quick note just to say that I have a young penguin, who goes by the name of 'Gwyn', packed and ready to meet his new friends in Alaska. If you send me your address I have can him on a plane and with you before Christmas.
If you haven't got time yet, don't worry. He can wait a little longer.

Look forward to hearing from you and hope that all is well.
Guy


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: Re: Gwyn
Date: Friday, December 01, 2000 3:24 AM

Dear Guy,
We are ready for Gwyn anytime. Make sure she is warm...we'll see to it that she gets a "parka".
We have two more weeks of school, then it is the holiday break until Jan. 3. The school won't be receiving mail during that time and I don't want Gwyn waiting on the loading dock. So either send her right now or wait until January.
Our address is:
Lorre Oxman
Arctic Light Elementary Bldg.
4167 Neely Street
Ft. Wainwright,
AK 99703
We are soooo excited!
I'll wait to hear from you!

Lorre

"The happiness of your life depends upon the character of your thoughts."


From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Gwyn
Date: Saturday, December 02, 2000 7:41 PM

Dear Lorre,
Good news, I waved Gwyn off at the post office this afternoon so he should be with you within the next week.
He's got his special polar thermals on so he should be ok during the flight.
You referred to Gwyn as a 'she' in your e-mail, he might get upset as 'Gwyn' is actually a Welsh boys name. It doesn't bother me but he might get a complex after a while!

A penguin residency is as long as you are willing to put up with him. A residency can be semi permanent if you wish, just like Dennis in New Zealand. It is entirely up to you.

I know he's looking forward to spending Christmas with you, it's all he's talked about. I would advise that you ration his sherry intake because he gets a bit excited. Dennis, his older brother, got arrested for being drunk in charge of his tricycle one year so one black sheep is enough for any family, don't you think?

If you could let me know that he's arrived safely I would be most grateful.

Speak to you soon and take care of yourselves.
Nadolig Llawen (Merry Christmas in Welsh)
Luv
Guy
XX


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: Re: Gwyn
Date: Monday, December 11, 2000 9:27 PM

Dear Guy,
Gwyn hasn't arrived yet, but I thought I'd touch base with you anyway. We are so excited. I've told the class and have been putting hints in my weekly newsletter about the arrival of something from a foreign country arriving soon. Everybody's curiosity has been running wild. I've written a letter to the faculty and staff about the project, opening up opportunities for anyone to give input.
Anyway, I will write you again when "he" arrives and fill you in on the festivities.

Luv,
Lorre
xx

"The happiness of your life depends upon the character of your thoughts."


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: Arrival
Date: Wednesday, December 13, 2000 2:28 AM

Hello, hello!
Gwyn arrived in our classroom on December 11th at 2:20pm. We all got very excited. I wanted to cut him out of his travelling time machine immediately, but hesitated because our partner class wasn't there for it. So he had to sleep in it one more night.
At 1:30 on December 12th both classes witnessed the unpackaging of Gwyn and welcomed him to our world. The first book read to him on American soil was called "A Wish For Wings That Worked", a story about a penguin wanting to fly on Christmas Day.
The students just embraced the whole idea and it has made them feel very special. They loved his helmet.

Thank you for the electronic greeting card...what fun! Next plan is to make Gwyn a home...a rookery of sorts.
We'll keep you posted.
Happy happy holidays!
Luv,
Lorre xx

"The happiness of your life depends upon the character of your thoughts."



From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Hello
Date: Tuesday, January 30, 2001 9:47 PM

Dear Lorre,
How are things at Arctic Light Elementary? Has Gwyn settled in ok? My penguins here are missing him, though I think it's just jealousy.

I recently sent one of them off on a penguin-watching trip to the South Pole and Antarctica with Wallace and Gromit's dad, Nick Park. Do you know of him? I'm sure your kids do. I'm just waiting now to see what they did with him.

I'm off myself on a world(ish) trip. I'm going to Australia, New Zealand, Rarotonga and then back via LA. Unfortunately I couldn't get Hawaii or Alaska included in the ticket. Hopefully that will be another trip.

I am leaving at the beginning of April and will be away for about 6 months. Don't worry because I'll be providing everyone with an alternative address for them to send any correspondence so that I can update the site while I'm away. I've also got somebody to manage the site in case there's any problems at my end. This project is truly global now!

How's the weather with you and is Gwyn bearing up ok? I understand that Bill Clinton was trying to push through congress a bill that would ban any kind of drilling for oil in Alaska. Did he achieve it or did Bush manage to put a stop to it (he's in favour of commercial exploitation of Alaska's natural resources, isn't he?).

Anyway, let me know how you're doing and stay warm.
Take care
Luv
Guy
XX


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: Re: Hello
Date: Wednesday, January 31, 2001 2:51 AM

Dear Guy,
You won't believe how much the kids adore Gwyn. He is the center of their entire world when they are in school. They want to read with him, take him to Music and Gym class, and set him in front of the T.V. when we watch videos about other penguins.

We all decided to do our class science fair project about how the emperor penguins keep warm during the coldest part of the winter. We even tried it out ourselves at -20. It works! Have you ever heard of the "Penguin Plunge"? Environmental issues are being addressed about that as we speak. We've started a collection of articles called Fun Facts About Penguins and a journal called "Through a Penguin's Eyes". The students are keeping a journal for Gwyn as if he is doing the writing. It is bursting with creative writing with kids colorful and playful thinking. Every Tuesday is "tye-dye" Tuesday. We've tye-dyed pillows & socks so far. Gwyn has his own and even a tye-dyed sweater for when we go on field trips. He found some very cool sunglasses in his Christmas stocking too. The students made him a nest and found him a girlfriend too (they thought he was lonely). He has placed "the perfect rock" at the foot of the nest. We're not quite sure if she has accepted him yet. He seems to keep up with our daily assignments. We have a math bingo he particularly enjoys.

While visiting the Oxman house for the holidays, he aquired a taste for the Beatles most recent CD "One" and Elton John. Although he listens to some opera too.

We're starting Penguin Poetry next week. I hope you can open the attachments I'm sending. One is my weekly newsletter to parents and the others are pictures of a bulletin board and showcase and, oh, by the way, our local newspaper will be doing a story on our project. I'll try to send it to you.

Your trip sounds awesome. I wish I were going too! Too bad you can't stop here. We'd love to meet you and we thank you for making us all feel very special.

Much Love,
Lorre and the kids


From: "Guy"
To: "Lorre Oxman"
Subject: Attachments
Date: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 12:15 AM

Dear Lorre,
What kind of attachments were the ones you sent me because I can't seem to be able to open them up.
If I know what program they were created in maybe I can. Or if you could send them to me in Word format or something that would be great.
Cheers
Guy
XX


From: "Lorre Oxman"
To: "Guy"
Subject: try this....
Date: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 2:14 AM

I sent the others for an IBM computer. This is in JPG format which I convert with a program called Graphic Converter. I have a Power Macintosh but the digital camera I used is compatable for both systems.
Good luck.
Lorre


From: arcflko@northstar.k12.ak.us (Lorre Oxman)
To: paperpenguins@hotmail.com
Subject: media coverage for Gwyn
Date: Fri, 30 Mar 2001

I hope this works. If it doesn't e-mail me back and I'll try again.
Lorre

"You can give without loving, but you can't love without giving."


From: "Guy Wooles"
To: Lorre Oxman
Subject: NZ penguin
Date: ????????

Dear Lorre,
How are you and Gwyn doing? I hope you are well and staying out of trouble. Just thought I'd send you an update to let you know that I am still alive.
I am currently in Oamaru staying with Dave Houston. I've been here for quite a while now (off and on) so I hope he doesn't get sick of me! It's been good to see Dennis again also. I've been to Moeraki to see the boulders and to the lighthouse to see Janice Jones who looks after all the sick penguins. One of her old patients, a yellow-eyed penguin called Inca, still comes to visit her in the hope that she'll give him some food?
The blue penguins at Oamaru haven't been turning up for their fans due to a bad storm a few weeks ago. It looks like the storm forced their food-source out to sea so they had to follow. The nests here should be full of fat penguins on eggs, but they're not. They've only just started returning now after an absence of approximately 17 days! But every time I go down to see them none come in - everyone down there thinks that I'm a jinx! The funny thing is that I've seen quite a few rare yellow-eyed penguins but hardly any common blue penguins.
I'm going down to Dunedin in the next few days and then on to Invercargill and eventually round to Milford Sound. I've already met the people at the Yellow-Eyed Penguin Trust and they now have a paper penguin all of their own called Herbie. Hopefully I'll get them to take me down to the reserves.
I've already done Australia. I did the south-east and the east coast and then flew to Darwin and came down through the Northern Territories and central Australia to Alice Springs and Ayers Rock. So I managed to do quite a bit but unfortunately I didn't get to the west coast - that's another trip!
Anyway, I hope you are looking after yourself and Gwyn and that you are having a good holiday (aren't you on holiday at the moment?). I'm looking forward to seeing and hearing what you've been up to.
Take care of yourself,
Guy
XX
PS Did I mail you back to say that I received only the text from your last attachment not the images? If I didn't then sorry. If you could hold on to it until I get back to the UK I'll sort it out then. The text was great though!


From: MAILER-DAEMON@pol.net.uk
To: guy@khern.freeserve.co.uk
Sent: Saturday, December 15, 2001 6:16 PM
Subject: My "Gwen" in Omaha
My "Gwen" in Omaha
Generated from : http://www.khern.freeserve.co.uk/Comments.htm a.. name
From: Susan De Roy

Hi Guy,
Just wanted to let you know that Gwen is about to end her annual hybernation and is getting ready to go into my classroom after the Christmas/Winter break. She helped me to create a penguin wonderland last year in my second grade classroom and this year she plans on doing the same. She will be the technical advisor for our milk gallon igloo again this year. (Providing we can find space for it. Thanks for sending her to us, I will try to get pictures off to you.
Susan Omaha,
Nebraska U.S.A.