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For the instant, job concerns are on the back burner. I hope to get a letter out this week to Mr Bonadie and Mr Keene to help clarify the political and organizational realities of my job change. I've been dragging my heels a bit. Only because I haven’t clearly organized my thoughts about the whole thing. But, it will gel and I will get on with it soon.

Today we received our initial itinerary for our trip home. Wow! It's a reality now. We're booked through to SLC on the 14th and the only things to hammer out are some of the ‘too close’ flight connections and a determination whether or not we want to go a bargain rate of $689 but keep our trip to just 21 days or to take five more days and fly back to St V on January 8th at a cost of $1,100. Practicality says to save the $400 per person (US!) and keep it to 21 days but that means fewer days in Meridian for Deb (7) versus 11 days. She'll have to make up her mind about that but will probably take the practical route. So at least it's all real now and we just need to make some final adjustments and see what the travel agent in Chicago can come up with. By October's end things should be on a firm footing. travel-wise and job-wise (I should hope!)

Busy weekend too. We had two unexpected overnight guests on Saturday night. Judith, Debbie's assistant got hold of us through neighbors phone to ask if we could put up Shawn and Thekla because she would be out all night(?) Deb said yes and initially I was very uncomfortable with the whole thing but, as it was, it wasn't nearly so bad. Shawn and Thekla were very well behaved (if recalcitrant in going to bed) and we managed to get them up and organized in time for church Sunday morning. After church, Jose, one of Deb's pediatric patients who has become a constant sidekick, came over and we went over to Autley Hall to swim and pick guavas. My second attempt at making them into jelly failed so I've got two quarts of guava syrup to try to thicken into jelly by using some pectin or alum (if I can find it). Jose is a good kid. His dialect still stymies communication at times but he helps me to understand what being a kid in St Vincent is all about. Perhaps he'll help educate the other neighborhood kids about “those white people”. I noticed a surprising thing though, even though there is fruit rotting off the trees a short distance from Edinburgh and indeed within it, our trees are regularly stripped. Amazing! I thought is was just because we had the only available trees but not so. We must have just a convenient location. 

Back to travel. The fact that will only need $3,750 EC to fly to the US frees up some of our funds. Maybe we can go to the ‘74 class reunion next August 11th. I just received notice of it last week so we'll have plenty of time to plan. I'd love to go but it will certainly be an optional thing. Not as pressing or needful as his trip to SLC over X-mas. “Visions of sugar plum fairies dancing in our heads”...