Sunday, March 19, 2017

I was supposed to call Chef Torcigliani on Monday. Well, I was supposed to text him to tell him I wanted to call him. I sweat it out until he eventually texted back that I could try calling him after 4:30 PM. I could not swallow food or relax all day. I tried calling him right after my lesson with the middle schoolers at 4:40 PM and again at 5:15 PM. I was anxious all through my Italian lesson for Emmanuel, until finally the chef called me while I was in a store where there was no campo (or whatever you call that in English) and my phone wasn't working. He agreed to meet me in person the following Monday, provided that I confirm a day or two beforehand. I have not really taken a relaxed breath since. Apnea: six days and counting. Today we got a confirmation. No big deal, but if he gave work to Emmanuel and possible to Job and Cool, as well, it would be one of the biggest successes of any of our lives thus far. 

We ended up throwing money at Jennifer's passport situation, and, like wet spaghetti, it stuck. We got some financial assistance from Courtney's big hearted mother Dinah and from our friend Shilpa, as well. It seems like now both Jennifer and Cool will be able to get their Nigerian passports, which are crucial for them to stay legal and renew their stay permits in Italy. The fact that it makes zero sense to require refugees to show passports from the countries they have fled seems lost on almost everyone. 

I couldn't celebrate fully because Peace's mamma still has big passport problems. We visited today and I can tell you that I wasn't wrong about the baby books. The ones Stefania donated are a big hit. 

The books are a hit! (told ya so!)

silly faces


In other big news, Peace started crawling! Well, she really started doing baby pushups and dragging herself backwards away from whatever objective she sets for herself, but it is a very good start. 

push ups
crawling .... backwards


it's exhausting, grandma ..


My favorite Nigerian Avon lady!

Nigerian snacks for sale!

While we were there Peace's mom asked us if we could find someone to repair their windows, to be later reimbursed by the landlord -- allegedly, and find out where Job can take an Italian course for a certificate towards his carta di soggiorno, and get an appointment with the lawyers, who did not reach back out to us all week, and find out how they can get food donations from the church, and something else. I feel so overwhelmed.

My courses at the converting line company are a challenge in terms of keeping the students happy. My classroom is filled with ants. Someone called maintenance for me and now there are ants and an ant-eating lizard on the window sill, and I can't say any of that is helping me to breathe any better.

T gave up breathing weeks ago and has decided not to fully exhale until the SATs are over in June, so that's fun. 

Gabry called from Romania, where he lives is a sod house that is now buried in snow. Their only heat source is firewood. He called to ask if we could give him the rest of the money that he needs to buy his taxi cab, now that we helped him get his license. We said we would, and we are hoping that somehow the universe is going to take care of us so that we can make it happen.

Luckily, all I have to do is face down the fancy gym fiasco at the Court of Appeals in Florence on Wednesday where I have to talk about financial stuff I have no idea about or face a thousand euro fine. Easy-peasy.

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