it's been a while

Hasn't it? The trouble with blogging is that it's not very interesting to blog when you have nothing to blog about. I pointed this out to the V when he was complaining about my un-updated blog this weekend. He helpfully reminded me that I DO have something to blog about. Two words: NEW. JOB.

OK, three words: HOORAY!

It took not nearly as long as I thought it would and when I saw it I knew it was the perfect one for me. The job I'd gone to graduate school to get. One that allows me to work with journalists, overseas and in Washington, and lets me help them be better at their jobs so that governments will do their jobs even better. Where in particular, you may ask? Russia, Ukraine, Azerbeijan, and...Armenia! Hopefully I'll get to travel to all, but most likely the first two at least a couple times a year.

They already knew me over at IREX from my travels last summer. They were kind enough to fund my research project and, in turn, my thesis. Now they'll be funding an above-poverty-grade lifestyle for this newly minted NGO staffer. In truth, it's a much better salary than I expected and I'm happy to report that I'll be able to pay my rent, bills, grad school loans, and possibly even tuck away a tiny bit into a retirement account each month. This is more than I can say for many friends in the NGO/think tank world.

Though it would've been nice to have transitioned into a full-time gig at the current office, I am somewhat relieved to be leaving the think tank world. It was a great complement to thesis research and an even better introduction to the field as a whole, but I'm ready to get my hands dirty, as it were. Hopefully, however, I won't have to dirty them eating borscht, the national dish of former Soviet states suffering from a dearth of taste. Blech.

In other exciting news, I cut my hair short! *giggles* It's very fun. See!