Go along to get along

Flavie on her favorite rug

Flavie loves rugs, especially this one, made by Joan’s housekeeper back in Costa Rica.

For people who don’t normally eat out much, we seem to have been in restaurants a lot this week. Last Sunday, we took a drive to El Paso to eat at Ardovino’s Desert Crossing (where I had gone to the farmer’s market the day before). It’s such a fun, funky atmosphere with 1950s decor. Thursday night, we went back to El Paso to pick up a few things, and had dinner at Mesa Street Grill.

Saturday we went on a “windshield tour of Juarez” with some folks from the Consulate.  John and I had seen most of the sites, but we had not yet been into downtown Juarez, so it was fun to drive through. There were some beautiful, grand, old houses on the main street, and we saw the cathedral and the Mission de Guadalupe. The downtown sector was bustling with shoppers. After the tour, we had lunch together at an Italian place, Caruso’s. It was a good time to sit and socialize.

Saturday night, we joined a small group of folks to meet the new NIV deputy chief and her husband at Frida’s, a neat restaurant dedicated to Frida Kahlo. Good conversation, food and margaritas. It was odd because this is a pretty well-known restaurant, but it was practically empty on a Saturday night – we speculated it was due to the continuing violence in Juarez. In fact, the owner of Frida’s was gunned down a few weeks ago while he was leaving another one of his bar/restaurants.

(I came across a fairly short article about the history of vice in Juarez – click here if you are interested.)

Work got pretty interesting this week – it was my first full week in the immigrant visa section. These are people whose families are Americans or permanent residents, and the families have petitioned to get the person to live in the U.S. For the first time, I had to tell an 86-year-old woman in a wheelchair that she couldn’t go live with her daughter in CA. (Why? Because she had been living with the daughter illegally on a tourist visa for the last year, so she is denied re-entry for 10 years.) Then I got to deny a guy for 10 years because he had a string of illegal presence, attemped illegal entry, alcohol abuse, domestic violence, burglary, etc.  I was happy to tell him no. His wife stood there crying and sniffling about the children – I figured I was doing her a favor. (That said, I’m sure he was over the back border in Texas before I went to lunch that day.) Anyway, it’s interesting.

John left super-early this morning for DC. He was selected to be the Post EEO counselor, so he went to training for a week in Washington. If an employee has some sort of grievance, John will be their liaison. Once again, John is the family super-star!

We watched an odd, but good, movie this week: Lars and the Real Girl.

I uploaded some photos of the house since we got our artwork and other things delivered. We really feel at home now!

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