Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Players gonna play

So I have like three ulcers, but the meeting with the lawyer from Caritas went very well. I take back EVERYTHING. Or at least PRACTICALLY everything. It was another sleepless night for me. Then this morning I am pretty sure that I woke up and also scared everyone in the group into being on time. I was sure they would be half an hour late, but they were adorably on time and sleepy looking. It was the lawyer who was late. We thought she wasn't going to show up because the head of Caritas and I realized at the same poignant moment that she had never confirmed. We had confirmed to each other, but not with her. Anyway, me and the group were pretty happy about the situation because we could get credit for coming without getting yelled at or having any legal retribution of any kind. Then ten minutes later, in she walked with her associate.

I quickly took the wheel. Before the meeting, I prepared the group that Tina was going to have suddenly forgotten how to speak any language but Nigerian and when she remembered Italian and English, I kicked her every so gently under the table. I decided the best road to go was to say that I had been very angry at Tina for not wanting to stay in the shelter and the lawyer laughed and said in English that they had seen the dark side of me. Then I said that I had to talk myself into understanding that she probably had valid reasons for her trust issues and that the rest of the group was still hoping that the lawyer was not mad at them and would continue to help them. She just laughed it off and said that it was her Calabrian temper and that we shouldn't worry about it. I wanted to say that I had not slept in about six days because of her little sfogo of letting off steam. But I then realized that I loved her. Then the head of Caritas went way out there on a limb for us and explained that they were really not baby stealers and that even if you had doubts about social services it was not cost effective to have to care for these babies if it were not really necessary due to situations of abuse or neglect. I love her, too.

The lawyer went around the table and helped every single person and Even called the staff of the camp in Calabria where Emmanuel is holed up and made an official gesture to become his lawyer and try to save him from being deported. She got Jennifer her permesso, and, if that was not enough, after the meeting she called around to the police stations to verify the dates that the permessi or stay permits would be ready for Cool, Job, and Jennifer to pick up. We all left feeling sleepy and elated. If you any of you have children, since my fertile days are almost offically over, please name them Manuela after this lawyer. They will cause you problems, but it will be worth it. 

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