To Nuevo Casas Grandes

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With souvenir Menonite cheese

On Wednesday, I headed down to a small town about three hours from here to do a passport outreach, where the local American residents could come in and apply for their passports. I went with four local staff and another officer. It was fun but a lot of work! We took almost three hundred applications during the two days we were there, which is pretty incredible.

It’s an interesting area¬†because there are two Mormon communities outside of Nuevo Casas Grandes – one is polygamist while the other is not. We would have the family of one man in front of us one minute, with his other family a bit later.¬†Colonia LeBaron, the polygamist colony, had a terrible tragedy a month or so ago, when two of their members were assasinated by the narcos in retalition for them speaking out against the narcos (after the narcos kidnapped another family member). There are also relatives of Mitt Romney down there (one was also kidnapped and released not too long ago).

This trip was also a valuable lesson for me. I didn’t realize that before we could start our work, I would need to meet with the mayor (“I’m sorry Mr. Mayor, but I can’t spend the afternoon siteseeing with you, but what a kind offer!”) and that I would be beseiged by press and interview requests. It’s a very small town!

The rest of the week was low-key – John and I had dinner at Los Bichis Monday night after work, then massage night on Tuesday.

Saturday morning, John broke his record by riding 50 miles on his bike – fanastic! He’s back at it this morning as I write.

We watched several movies this weekend, including “Babel,” “Waltz with Bashir” and “Doubt” – all good.

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