The respite center is located in an old downtown part of McAllen, very charming and much like a small town in Mexico. Everyone is bilingual, it seems, and shift effortlessly from Spanish to English to Spanish. I love using and improving my Spanish but noticed that whenever I approached someone, they used English with me. I guess I look pretty gringo.
Below is a photo of a shop window--it was filled with old TVs and each had a message. I liked this one a lot.
When the refugees are detained, most of what little they have is confiscated, including shoelaces and belts and hair ties, presumably because these could be used to commit suicide. So when they leave detention, they tear apart the mylar blankets and make their own belts and hair ties. We find a lot of these when we clean up the showers.
In September I hugged a kid (or more) and brought home a cold. Ever defiant, in October I hugged some more. Got another cold. Colds don't scare me.
This was actually an event in late June, sponsored by a different group. Individuals pledged to fast and pray in opposition to the family separation policy. This was at a rally at a near by park, with a variety of speakers and personal stories. Very moving.