Our trip was planned to coincide with our friends' visit back to Albuquerque from their home in Paris. Our dear friends, Kit and Jean-Claude Desjacques, only travel back to New Mexico every two years so this was our one opportunity to get together while they were here in the states. We had a long leisurely breakfast visit one morning and later in the week attended a "Welcome Back" cocktail party hosted by one of their friends the last night we were in town.
Gil's sister, Genie (The Donor!), met up with us in Albuquerque for the entire week. We all enjoyed the hospitality and guest accommodations of my other dearest of friends, Terry Lee Heller, who usually hosts me by myself for "girl-time" but this time allowed the "family reunion" of Raffs to share the lodging.
We were able to see a number of people whom Gil had not seen for almost eight years. His physician colleagues and spouses. Our Jewish community friends. My past investment club women friends and their husbands. We got to the galleries in Santa Fe. We ate at The Shed and Tomasita's -- both serving authentic New Mexican food with hot and flavorful green chile smothering every dish. Such a treat.
Gil and Genie hiked through Bandelier National Monument one day.
We had planned a garden party at Terry's house (which actually did have a new garden recently installed) and spent one whole day food shopping, and prepping and cooking. Of course, ten minutes after the party started and the guests arrived, a thunderstorm came up over the mountains and chased us all inside for the remainder of the evening. But even rainstorms are welcomed in Albuquerque because this has been a very dry season for the city and state.
We had lunch with another dear friend, Elsie Berry, who helped keep our house neat and clean and cared for our kids when Gil and I were working and raising our young family in Albuquerque many years ago. I'm guessing she worked for us for 15 years while we lived in New Mexico.
Gil's one-time cardiology partners either had us to dinner at their home (Thank you, Neal and Susan) or treated us to dinner out at Season's (Thank you, Barry and Roberta) or met us at The Flying Star -- a favorite cafe -- for late afternoon coffee (Thank you, Kathy Blake).
Our plates were FULL! We were busy morning to night.
There are so many of you we did not get to contact or visit with. My apologies. Since this was Gil's first long distance trip, we had to carefully orchestrate a schedule that didn't leave him exhausted and vulnerable at the end of each day.
So we will plan a second trip and catch up with all of you we missed this time during our next visit.
Update on the kids:
Adam and Laura went to a lab-sponsored celebration over the weekend as a final congratulations party for all his years of hard work. He's finished in the lab now and has a week off (!) before starting third year medical school studies on July 6th.
Evan finished his medical boards last week -- an enormous relief -- and is coming to Michigan tomorrow for a week of rest and relaxation. He goes back to LA to start third year medical studies on July 6th, also.
Marika is back from her volunteer medical work in Panama and jumped right in to her MCAT Review Course with Kaplan and her summer school course. She's coming to Michigan for the Fourth of July weekend and will overlap with Evan's visit.
Gil got the iPad he had ordered earlier in the month and is, at this very moment, loading it up with all his apps and programs even before he unpacks his suitcase! He's addicted to the cool Apple products coming out of Cupertino. Has his iPhone 4 to replace his 3GS on order as well.
Okay. Vacation's over. Back to work!