By Nancy Jacobsen
Those of us who arrived in Lima before the official first day of the DFW 2014 Peru trip, were invited to join the Lima chapter for their October meeting, We had no idea what to expect. We were overwhelmed by the joyous welcome of our hostess Elle Bagnarol and the chapter members. We were impressed that several members brought their teen-age daughters, who were charming.
We were picked up at our hotel and driven to the event by two of the husbands. They gave us an intrroduction to Peru’s government and business environment as well as social structure.
When we arrived at Elle’s spectacular house, we were offered our first Pisco sour, the unofficial drink of Peru. We immediately found common topics of conversation: Children, where we live now, where we are originally from and which DFW chapter we belong to. Most of the DFW Lima members are American expats. Several women were born and raised in Peru. Many of the members have lived all over the world, moving for job changes, in mining, oil and gas, banking and the U.S. Consulate. The Embassy in Lima employs about 250 U.S. citizens plus support staff. It is one of the largest regional Embassies in South America.
The food was fabulous. The buffet table was filled with all sorts of Peruvian dishes and international favorites plus salads, fruit and desserts. My favorite was a layered yellow potato torta with alternating layers of chicken, topped with cheese, red peppers and olives, called “causa”.
We ate outside on the covered patio. The tables were set with lovely flower arrangements made by Elle. When we read the DFW mission statement together, it felt more meaningful than ever before. I think some of us had tears in our eyes.
After dinner, over coffee and dessert, the chapter coleaders (look up names) presented the October program video & led a Q&A session. We could have talked all night, but sadly it was getting late and our drivers were waiting to take us back to the hotel.
We kissed and hugged goodbye to our hostess, chapter leaders and new friends. Muchas gracias for a most memorable meeting.