Happy Thanksgiving!

November 28th, 2021

We celebrated Thanksgiving at an Embassy potluck held outside by the pool, then again last night at Matthew’s house. Both events were fun and gave us the chance to visit with folks. I chatted a long time with a visiting CDC doctor, in part about the new COVID variant identified last week by scientists in South Africa.

We welcomed a new local staff member to the team this week – I’m grateful to finally have a fraud assistant on board (one more to go!). Training up new people takes so much time and effort, but it will pay off in the long run.

John and I watched a slow but very sweet moving about refugees this week, “Limbo.” And we’re watching our Finnish crime show (and enjoying the beautiful snowy scenery in Finland).

One very happy and relaxed cat!

Back in the Groove

November 21st, 2021

John and I got back to work this week – I spent most of the week just catching up on emails and cables. We welcomed a new officer to the consular section, so we’re finally back to our normal staff of four officers. It was tough getting up every morning, especially as we shake off the jet lag. Since Liberia doesn’t do daylight savings time, we are now five hours ahead of Washington.

I had a nice video chat Friday afternoon with a consular colleague back in DC, but otherwise it was a quiet week. We celebrate Local Staff Appreciation day on Wednesday, and employees were greeting by a small band of high school musicians as we came to work. The local staff enjoyed a free lunch from the cafeteria, as well.

We watched the silly but fun “Red Notice” this week, as well as the most recent episodes of “Succession,” “The Morning Show,” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” John spent all afternoon and evening yesterday playing board games (and had a blast), while I gratefully stayed home and read “Unspeakable Acts,” a compilation of essays on crime.

A pretty quiet week! I’ll take it!

And just like that…

November 14th, 2021

…we’re back in Monrovia! Time flew too quickly, but we had a lovely R&R back home! In the blink of an eye, we went from our gorgeous lake view back to sunsets over the Atlantic.

Last Sunday I had a great visit with Pam and Jackie – Pebbles spent some quality time on John’s lap, too! Monday, John’s friend Michael S. came to visit. Tuesday we drove to Little Rock for our COVID tests, then Alison treated us to a delicious Thanksgiving dinner. We spent our last night in town having dinner with Chuck at The Bugler restaurant at the racetrack.

Flavia was not happy with us when we first got back home, but has since glued herself to me, so I think I’m forgiven. She’s been on my lap all morning as I finished reading Stegner’s “Angle of Repose” (what a lovely read!).

With Jackie and Pebbles
Hot Springs view from West Mountain
West Mountain
Thanksgiving
Last morning at the lake
Clouds over Atlanta airport
Back in Monrovia

Happy birthday, John!

November 7th, 2021

We celebrated John’s birthday with a nice steak at 501 Prime Friday night – happy birthday, John!

We drove to Fayetteville to see John’s family on Monday. We had a good visit, including dinner at Pete and Ginger’s Monday night with Philip and Michelle. Ginger and I did some shopping on Tuesday, then we all worked a jigsaw puzzle. Wednesday’s drive back to Hot Springs was lovely – we were very lucky to see a herd of elk close to the road in Boxley. We stopped in Clarksville for a yummy Tex-Mex lunch, and drove up to the Queen Wilamena Lodge only to be greeted by pea-soup fog!

Mary and Lynna brought BBQ for lunch on Thursday and we enjoyed a nice visit with them. Stoker came yesterday, and I ran errands, walked, and had coffee with David while they yakked.

I finished Stephen Fry’s “Mythos” last Sunday, then read “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian.”

Ahhhhhhhh

October 31st, 2021
Last boat ride of the season

David and Alison took us out for a sunset cruise last night, followed by a soup & cornbread dinner with Peewee in attendance – big fun. It was a perfect day – sunny and cool. We spent the afternoon on the balcony visiting with Deb and Doug and grilling burgers. Life’s good.

The week was filled with appointments and a good dose of relaxation: dentist, leg x-rays, dermatologist, shingles vax, COVID booster, hair cut. Had a great lunch visit after my haircut in Maumelle with my former co-worker Leslie. I spent several afternoons at David and Alison’s, and Friday afternoon was nice and lazy in Chuck’s living room drinking coffee and catching up.