Where to begin?
Well, right now I am enjoying a beautiful summer-like Minnesota morning. I just finished sipping my morning coffee out on my in-laws deck, still wearing my pajamas. And, you might be wondering "are they back already?" (come on, admit you asked the question!). Well, the answer is... no. We are here until Monday (tomorrow).
Both, Chris and I, have spent quite some time, since the beginning of April, looking up jobs for when our year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps is over in mid August. We have been very fortunate to have received calls back and invitations for interview from different places we have applied for. We have been even more fortunate to accept the generosity of our friend Shawn Helmeke who paid for our plane tickets to come here and attend those interviews. So, that's the main reason for our short visit to the cities.
Tomorrow I have an interview with Eden Prairie Schools for a teaching position that I am more than excited to get; and still trying to lower that excitement in case it does not work out as I hope it does. Chris has three interviews tomorrow. Yes, three. I wish you could see him in the interview clothes he just bought. In fact, I have never seeing him dressed like that. He looks really cute. So, we will basically drive all over the place tomorrow dressed in clothes that you would normally never see us wearing. We have been very lucky to have people around that continue to support and encourage us in all of our endeavors. That makes a huge difference in us. So, thank you.
El Paso is getting hot lately. There are ads for free concerts at the plazas and parks and that is exciting. Our garden is growing. Did we mention all the things we just planted? I can not remember. Well, here I go. We have been eating from our lettuce and carrots for while now. But a about a couple months ago we planted onions, squash, eggplant, green beans, tomatoes, zucchini, peppers (red, green and jalapeños), broccoli, spinach, cilantro and potatoes. For a few weeks I looked like none of them were going to make it but now everything is sprouting. On the other hand, my white gardenias are not doing that hot and the pink oleanders are trying to survive. Our community have become closer and closer and those are very good news. Everybody is kind of in the same page of "what are we doing when this is over?" section. We have a little bit less than three months left in the program and a big project ahead to plan a trip to the Great Canyon with the community without supporting Arizona's economy. (Yes, we are also banning Arizona. Just kidding... I guess. No? No, may be not kidding.)
Both our works are doing fine. Chris almost looks like a social worker. He has brought around three persons to drug or alcohol rehabilitation centers and has been visiting them. This has made his work more meaningful and has allowed him to establish a closer relationship with the people he serves. I am busy, busy, busy at my work. I do not know if it is the tax refunds or the hope for a migratory reform that have brought so many people to apply for residency, but we are swamped with work. And that is good, but it is a lot of work. I also have larger groups in this semester's English and Citizenship classes. I like it better this time, probably because I feel more confident than the first time I offered both and also because these new groups seem more motivated, driven, and committed to accomplish their goals. And people, that makes a world of a difference.
Well, I have said too much and Chris is hurrying me to go to Excelsior to play some tennis with him and Shawn (as if I could!). It will definitely be hard to leave all this green summer-ish beautiful Minnesota weekend behind and go back to El Paso. But, we are aware that we are very needed there and we have people that loves us and are waiting for us to come back "home". In short though, we will be back.
Thank you all for your support and prayers throughout this year. Just stay with us for a few more months.
Leti and Chris
PS: Please, keep us in mind and in prayers as we go through the whole interview process.