Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Two and a Half Days

It is amazing that I only have two and a half more days left at the South Texas Civil Rights Project. Overall it has been a good experience. There have been a few times when I had to restrain myself from having a temper tantrum. But since I am now an adult I prevailed over my urge to jump up and down and scream. Everyone should give me a pat on the back.

I uploaded some photos to Facebook for those of you who are cool enough for such things. They can be seen here for those who are not.

I am definitely excited to be going home but I am glad I chose to come to the Valley for the summer.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Time Flies

I can't believe I only have one week left in the Valley. That means I have already been here two months!

I will make sure to take some more photos around the office. There is a nifty mural over here that will be good to remember. Tomorrow we are having a farewell barbecue so I will try to take photos then as well.

Today was extremely busy because I had to file a response with the court. I wrote the response and gathered up the evidence to support it. That is the second piece of my work that has been submitted. Next week I will attend a hearing on a response I submitted about a month ago. I am pretty excited!

Next Saturday I will be heading north toward home. I can't wait to pass the Austin City Limit sign!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Dolly Update

Well things have quieted down. It has stopped raining, but it is still cloudy. I have not been back to the mobile home, but I was told the office where I work doesn't have power. The mobile home is only a mile and a half away so I assume it doesn't have power either.

Once I return to the mobile home I will update on how it weathered the storm. In any case, I survived Hurricane Dolly.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hurricane Dolly Update

I am safe and sound so far.

I woke up this morning and turned on the television to find that Dolly was a category two hurricane. This made me extremely nervous since I was in a mobile home trailer. Yikes!

I called up my supervisor and she said to come on over to her house. It didn't get too crazy where I am until about 6 in the evening. The rain is still coming down and the wind is pretty bad. We had a tree branch hit one of the windows but nothing broke. It was just a teeny bit scary.

I will keep y'all posted.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tropical Storm Dolly

I just wanted to let everyone know that I am taking precautions due to Dolly. It looks like it will become a category one hurricane before it hits land.

The storm is expected to make landfall tomorrow at Brownsville, Texas which is about 50 miles away from me. More than likely I will just experience a great deal of rain.

I will keep my parents posted, but there is no reason to worry!

Monday, July 21, 2008

A Quick Trip to Austin

Thursday after work, I drove up to Austin so I could attend the final class for my internship. On the way north I stopped at a Burger King. While I was filling up my cup with pop, a woman asked me if I was married and gestured behind her saying that man wants to know. I told her that I was too young to be married. So then she asked me how old I was. I explained that I was 25. She said oh that's perfect he's 30! For cripes' sake. I can't even go to Burger King without getting hit on.

Friday I attended the class and then the professors took us out to lunch. It was nice to speak with the other people about their internship experiences. It seems like mine has been much better than most.

After eating I rode around with a realtor to look at a few places to live. The realtor was very helpful and I found a new home in Austin. It is in a small complex at 47th and Red River. It is close to school, the grocery store, a city bus stop and one of my favorite coffee shops. I can't believe I have my very own apartment and I'm excited to live on my own for the first time ever.

Saturday I drove down to Gruene to watch my friend Jeff play with his band. He plays the upright bass for The Belleville Outfit. They opened for Lyle Lovett a few weeks ago. How cool is that? Uncle Pat you can check them out here. They will be playing at the Austin City Limits Music Festival in September.

Then I headed to San Antonio to visit my friend, Val, from high school. She is working at an internship for her doctorate of audiology. It was great to catch up with her.

Sunday I started south for the Valley but got myself a bit lost. Don't fret though I busted out my trusty Texas map and followed 173, 16 and 140 back to the main highway route. It was truly beautiful out there in the middle of nowhere and I even drove on a dirt road for a bit. I haven't seen one of those in almost seven months.

In any event I am back in the Valley for two more weeks.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

My Second Client Interview and Other Happenings

The Texas Civil Rights Project filed a petition with the court to force the Border Patrol to reveal its hurricane evacuation policy for the Rio Grande Valley. In May, officials in McAllen, Texas, undertook a simulated evacuation drill and practiced verifying the immigration status of mock evacuees. This is a very dangerous practice for all Valley residents whether or not they are documented. It is a human right to evacuate from a hurricane's path. It is completely unacceptable that the Border Patrol would unnecessarily delay the evacuation process. You can read a bit more about it here.

In other news, I participated in my second client interview on Friday. This interview went much better than the first one. I was expected to come up with the questions to ask the client and at the interview I was able to ask all the questions myself. After the interview my supervisor and I typed up an affidavit. An affidavit is basically the written statement of a witness in a case. I wasn't nervous during the process and I feel like I did a good job. So yea me!

After the interview my supervisor, two other interns, and I went out to lunch. We drove to an area called Las Milpas and ate at Melissa's Tacqueria. I inhaled some very yummy enchildas. I even ordered my coke in Spanish! Yo queiro coka cola por favor. =)

Next weekend I drive back to Austin for a final class meeting. This is the last meeting for the academic portion of my internship. After that I will have just two weeks left. I cannot believe how quickly the time has passed. While I am in Austin next weekend I hope to sign a lease for an apartment. Hopefully, I will be able to get that taken care of and I won't need to think about it anymore.

Monday, July 7, 2008

My First Client Interview

So today I sat in on a client interview. It made me realize just how slowly the wheels of justice turn. I want to change our client's situation right now and not a year or more from now.


Friday, July 4, 2008

Mom Says "Write a Post Already"

I talked to my Mom a couple of days ago and she informed me I needed to update my blog. So here you go Mom, an update. Finally!

First I want to congratulate my Mom on her new job. I'm really proud of her and very excited for her! Yay Mom! She gets to go to California for a two week training and I am kind of jealous because I've never been to California.

Since it has been forever I will just jot down some highlights of the last few weeks.

I finally went to the beach! South Padre Island is very commercialized but the ocean was a gorgeous sea green and the water was deliciously warm. I swam a bunch and was almost knocked over by a big wave. I'm short people! The wave was taller than me! Plus miracle of miracles I didn't get a sunburn. Thank you Bobbi for the birthday present sunscreen.

I also went over to Mexico after work one day with a group of the women from the office. We paid a quarter to walk across the bridge that spans the Rio Grande (or the Rio Bravo as it's called in Mexico). The view was beautiful but I of course forgot my camera. Once on the other side I noticed the unending rows of pharmacies and dentists. It was crazy. It is much much cheaper to purchase medicine in Mexico and it is also cheaper to get dental work. So lots of the Winter Texans cross over to buy their drugs. I also saw a tank and half a dozen soldiers with guns. Apparently the Mexican government is trying to crack down on the illegal drug trade. We had a nice dinner and then we paid 35 cents to cross back over the bridge.

I also discovered a coffee shop in McAllen. It is called Moonbeans. I thought that was a clever name. Right now they are playing oldies on the radio. They have yummy coffee and a tasty blueberry scone. I am quite happy I found it. Hanging out in coffee shops is one of my favorite things to do and I've missed it since I've left Austin. Plus they have the internet. The internet is like a drug to me and I don't have it at the house I'm living in.

In other news I am enjoying lawyering. I remember sitting in the dirt digging up dead people's trash and thinking I didn't really want to do this for the rest of my life. So the fact that I enjoy what I am doing right now is a huge relief. I picked the right path this time! Woohoo!

I will try and update more often after this but no promises Mom.

P.S. Happy Birthday America!