Tuesday, January 03, 2017

When the cat's away ...            
the mice don't drink coffee. 
Yes, well, F went to California to have a memorial service for his mother Anna. He is getting to spend time with his sister, and they are very busy sorting out, packing up, and sharing memories. Since he has been gone, T and I have been fending for ourselves. F is the coffee guy in our family and the cook and he does the lion's share of household stuff, if we're being honest. Unfortunately, T and I have quite the caffeine addictions, and so morning is what I can only describe as truly unpleasant. T tried valiantly that first night, but neither of us could wrench open the two parts of the old fashioned moka coffee maker that F's giant hands had welded together. We found a bigger model, and so T decided to give that a try. It seemed like a good plan, but she hadn't noticed that it was still attached to a plastic heating unit when she put it on the electric burners, where it promptly melted into some goo that I have yet to scrub off the stove top. There was also a medium sized moka pot. I know this is starting to sound very Goldilocks and the three bears, but the medium pot was not just right because its top didn't match its bottom and to make a long story short, T and I briefly considered cannibalism or a solution of the Greek tragedy variety, but it passed.
The very next morning I thought I would try to regain some of T's completely lost respect for me as a resourceful human. I stumbled out into the street, while T was still in bed, with a moka pot in my frozen little hands. Luckily, Ezekiel was out there in his usual spot in front of the ortofrutta. He opened it for me in two seconds flat, and as a thank you I treated him to a coffee at the cafe around the corner. Job and Cool and his brother Ehis showed up after that so I treated them to coffee, as well, because my empathy for the caffeine deprived was at a life time high. 
Poor F almost missed his connection from Paris to Detroit, and then did, indeed, miss his flight from Detroit to L.A. He had to sleep in an airport hotel. His sister Regan put these photos up on FB, so I feel like I can steal them. 
family tree research
Anna's church
Indian food
jet lagged to the max
Virtually every member of the refugee group has called to check on me (sweet!) and to make me aware of numerous unpleasant issues such as broken things, unpaid for things, a death of a loved one in Nigeria, and lots of stuff like that. I have a new plan for getting jobs for the men and it involves "incentives," which is my nice way of saying something slightly less legal. 
Behind the scenes I am trying to arrange for Eltion and Nino and Ezekiel to get the new apartment in move in condition tomorrow, despite the fact that the water and electricity isn't turned on yet, and we have yet to arrange for the stove delivery.
I also spoke to Emmanuel's lawyers today, but it seems that his sentence from the judge hasn't been issued yet. Until we have the sentence, no one can get to work making a new request for his international protection. Next week we have permessos to get for Cool and Emmanuel, and that can mean only one thing: It is time for F to make some of his famous gorgonzola sourdough bread for the immigration police.
Can I just say that my quality of life has improved three-fold by giving a Christmas cupcake to the postal worker. Now she is so nice to me! For the six months leading up to now, she did nothing short of shoot lasers at me with her eyes, snort, and be exasperated with me no matter how fast I tried to fly down the six flights of stone stairs. 
T had fun at this New Year's birthday party, and then, today, she went with a group from the party to Pisa to check out the Dali exhibit. Tomorrow she has a class trip to Florence, even though it is still vacation time. Basically, she has a few new friends from the class above hers. They are older, obviously, and more mature. After four years spending day in and day out with the same small class, it mixes things up in a good way. 

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