More goodbyes

with Brad (left) and Mike at our carpet party

with Brad (left) and Mike at our carpet party

I don’t like this goodbye stuff, not one bit! Several good friends left this week – my BFF Brad in the consular section and Deputy Debby topped this week’s list. We had a consular happy hour on Monday evening since several folks left this week. John W. flew out after happy hour, and the rest left at various times throughout the week. 

Our gang of usual suspects, John (Crippen), Brad, Mike and I, went to the French Club for lunch on Brad’s last day. Julia had a dinner party for Debby on Thursday night – a fun evening and reminiscent of when I first started to get know Julia, Debby, Charlie, Zia, and Anna, so it seemed fitting to all be together again. 

Before the dinner party, John and I had farewell drinks with Brad and Mike at the Club. At the same time, Rick and Sarah were having a big happy hour there, as well, so we also had a chance to tell them goodbye. They’ve been great neighbors and I’ll miss exchanging basil for her homegrown lettuce. We told them to remember us when they become ambassadors! 

Friday night was a very touching retirement ceremony for our good friend Spence. He has been here with the Department of Defense, and I worked closely with him on getting visas for the Pakistan military going to the U.S. for training. He’s a great guy. 

In the small world department, an old friend from Hendrix who lives in London met my former boss from Tel Aviv, who also lives in London now! Patrick posted a photo of them together on Facebook for me to see – it made me so happy! So I guess even though I’m saying goodbye to folks now, you just never know where they will turn up next! 

Work was hectic and stressful as usual; I’m still trying to make a dent in all the work I have to do before I go! We also did a bit more shopping: we bought two more rugs from Herat Carpets on Monday during a lunch hour spree, and another one yesterday when a vendor came by our house to show us “a very special carpet” (why yes, it is!). 

One of my favorite things that arrived this week is the beer bucket in the photo above that’s been “trucked out.” Here, they decorate big trucks and busses with bright paintings and bells or pieces of metal chains that clink together (hence the name “jingle trucks”). So we ordered a big bucket to be filled with ice and bottles of beer or soft drinks for a party:

Beer Bucket

Beer Bucket

Relax and have fun!

Relax and have fun!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Saturday we stayed home all day to prepare for packout, which is zooming towards me in a few days. That means going through all those drawers where you stick things; trying on clothes to see what fits and what doesn’t; deciding what goes in suitcases, air shipment, or sea shipment; putting all those bottles of lotions, shampoos, etc. ┬áinto ziplock bags; switching all of the linens and dishes in the house to the Embassy’s temporary stock; and going through pantries to see what gets tossed, packed, or given away.  

Flavie is getting suspicious of all this activity. She sees her carrier and our suitcases… 
It also meant that John had his last coffee roasting session. He took this photo to remind him of how pleasant it is to sit on our balcony and smell that wonderful coffee as it roasts. I’m throwing in photos of our huge mango and fig trees, too!

John's view while roasting coffee

John’s view while roasting coffee

Mango tree

Mango tree

Fig tree

Fig tree

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