Happy birthday, John!

With Rick at the Polo Lounge

We celebrated John’s birthday this week! Last Sunday night, we went with our friend Rick to a neat restaurant called Polo Lounge. It’s partially an outdoor restaurant – it was a beautiful evening out, and we enjoyed a nice bottle of red wine with our steaks (being a Muslim country, restaurants can’t serve alcohol, but some places let you bring your own). We got tickled on our way out – a family, dressed up for a nice night out – stopped to ask to have their picture taken with me. Is it because I’m western or taller than average or sort of blonde or …? It makes me giggle.

Monday was John’s actual birthday and his staff brought in his favorite pizza for lunch. They’re a cute bunch, especially the girls who like to laugh and tease. So, I think he had a good birthday overall!

The rest of the week was pretty low-key. John took me to lunch at the French Club on Thursday, and we ate outside the other days this week at the American Club.

My partner in crime Scott has been in Thailand all week, and my other “work husband” Michael was gone Thursday and Friday, so my office hasn’t been nearly as much fun without them. I am so lucky to work with both of them. Michael is head of the Fraud Prevention Unit and Scott is the American Citizens Services chief. We see eye-to-eye on pretty much everything, and we share a sense of humor – they really make going to work fun and I sure will miss them when they leave next summer!

Speaking of friends, Rick had been away for a three week R&R and just arrived home last Sunday. We’ve missed having him around as well and it was good to catch up with him. We all sat down in John’s office Thursday after work and had a mini happy hour together. Friends are a good thing!

There are several of us here in Islamabad who worked together in Juarez (Michael included), and we found out during our meet -and-greet with our new Ambassador that his first tour was also Juarez, back in the 80s. He came down to tour the consular operations this week – he seems very personable and down to earth.

Yesterday John and I got out to do some shopping, which we rarely do. It was fun to  get out and poke around some stores.


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