Back home in DC and over two months has already whizzed by. We still have not resolved our computer issues (sticky keys on one, death by glass of water for the other). Fortunately I discovered a little media center in the lobby of the building where we are staying so I am able to scratch my blogging itch. I should probably get that looked at. So much jammed into our last few weeks in Luanda, I’ll do my best to let the pictures do the majority of the talking, but I can’t make any promises. So here we go— my knitting has finally graduated from scarves, simple camis and sofa throws to sweaters. I made this one for a friend’s new little fella, though the Bushbaby is modelling above. Sometimes it really is hard to part with these things after you’ve finished them! It’s a great lesson in detachment and enjoying the process. Something it seems we FS folks are regularly beat over the head with but that’s another story. Now I’m working on a pretty linen sweater for myself that I peck away at on weekly metro trips out to my yoga studio in Bethesda. It’s a nice way to spend the long ride from Capitol Hill. Over Easter weekend, (our second to last weekend on the continent) we snuck in a quick trip back to Cape Town. A fabulous way to frost our African adventure cake and for Snakes to fulfill his dream of running in the 2 oceans ultra marathon. No biggie…just a 56K. Nope, not a typo, fifty-six kilometers, a hair shy of 35 miles. Just thinking about that distance makes my thighs quake for mercy. But I have to say that that man rocked it. Despite the gale force winds sweeping around the seashores, he finished at 5:13. Next day was Easter Sunday which we spent lazing about Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens picnicking and chasing after the Bushbaby. Back to Luanda that next Monday with only around 10 days remaining. Since the embassy was closed that Thursday and we enjoy loading our schedules to the absolute max, we decided to invite everyone over for a giant bbq and farewell picnic. Around 50 people came. Snakes threw a pig leg onto his “big green egg” grill and commenced slow roasting for around 12 hours or so. I’d like to say that the turn out was due to how well loved we were at post, but I’m no fool. It was the promise of that massive smokey hunk of pork. The following day, Friday, I hosted a trunk-show with another friend. I had finally convinced our housekeeper to keep an eye on the Bushbaby one day a week while I escaped to my studio to work on some new stuff. I am so happy to report that I enjoyed it tremendously. I had worried that after all of this time away from my studio and any creative outlet- I would be comically rusty. Not true! Things turned out beautifully. Of course I only managed to photograph a few of the bags, but I’ll put the remainder up on etsy soon and my little side link will be active once again. We managed to raise a few hundred dollars for a local orphanage by donating 10% of our sales. Rather than handing over money, we elected to buy cases of diapers and formula. We packed out that next Monday- Wednesday and boarded the Houston Express back home on Thursday. We all arrived safely in Philadelphia that next Friday night where my sister-in-law was waiting, balloons in hand, to pilot the final leg of our journey back to Bethlehem, PA. We spent the next week in the gracious warmth and coziness that only a grandparent’s house can offer. Homemade goodies in the fridge, on the counter and in the oven. Springtime popping outdoors. What a way to decompress. From there, Snakes and the dogs headed to DC to get started with Spanish training at FSI. Bushy and I boarded a flight to Denver to visit my sister and her family for a couple of weeks. Now, back in the district, back into the rhythm of this life that I’ve missed so much. So grateful for this deceptively simple freedom. We ride our bikes and play in these gorgeous public spaces that constitute our nation’s capitol. We breathe deeply and fully. Why would we ever want to leave again? Oh yeah, and Snakes got himself a new bike. More on that later.