What is Washboard Express?

Washboard Express is a way for me to express my own opinions, to be a provocative gadfly, by writing a "letter a day" to the President. I may miss a day here and there, because sometimes my family with be my first priority, but my goal is to write a total of 365 letters, representing one full year. To say I have opinions about most things would be to understate the obvious. Those of you that know me, know this is true, those who don't know me, will learn that it's true. The Washboard is a reference to going back to basics and "keeping it clean," so if you would like me to post your comments or opinions on this blog, I only ask that you be respectful. So go ahead, express yourself, and I look forward to an exchange of ideas and opinions.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Day 91...Dear Mr. President... A New American Citizen to be Proud of.

Day 91

Dear Mr. President,

I want to tell you the story of an extraordinary woman named Lenka. I met Lenka nine years ago after seeing an ad in our local paper offering housekeeping services.

Lenka is from the Czech Republic and was here visiting her Czech boyfriend Jerry, who, at the time, had been in the U.S. for about 16 years. Jerry came with Lenka on that first visit because her English was limited. I knew the minute I met her, that she was special… she stepped into the house and immediately picked up our small Yorkie, who began showering her with endless kisses from his tiny tongue. Lenka was an animal lover, and that was good enough for me.

Over the months we began talking more and more because Jerry told us in our initial meeting that he and Lenka would be getting married in the near future, and we owned a bridal magazine. As time passed Lenka became nervous because her visa was about to expire and she would have to return to the Czech Republic. Jerry told her they would apply for a green card so she could stay longer and not to worry, he would take care of everything.

Long story short… after Lenka’s visa expired and she was now here illegally, Jerry said there would be no wedding. Lenka was devastated, hurt and frightened, as she learned about all the lies he had told her to keep her here. The woman Lenka lived with told her she wasn’t the first Czech woman he brought to America with the promise of marriage. Of course Lenka could not stay with a man who betrayed and lied to her.

Lenka’s dream of becoming an American citizen did not come easy… after working with immigration lawyers, and finally getting her green card, she could now begin to work toward her citizenship. She got a job, a license, went to school to learn how to speak and write better English, and she is a hard worker, and a wonderful friend.

On Monday September 12th Lenka took her test for citizenship and passed with flying colors. On the 21st of September at 8:30 in the morning she will take her oath, pledge her allegiance, and become a citizen at the age of 50 years, fulfilling a lifetime dream. Those of us who are fortunate enough to know this special woman, know that words alone cannot explain how happy we are for our friend, and soon to be fellow American. America is a better place already, because Lenka is here to stay.

One of the first acts of being a true American citizen will be to vote in her very first Presidential election. Like all new citizens, Lenka takes this responsibility very seriously and will do everything necessary to make an informed decision… I hope very much she chooses to be a Democrat and vote for President Obama in 2012.

I hope you’ll join me in congratulating Lenka for her determination and success at finally becoming an American Citizen, as I plan to be there, watching and cheering.

Most Respectfully,

Marcia Reimers, 
Your Gadfly Granny

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