Amazing that it's April and this is my first post of 2011, I'll have a lot of writing to do if I'm going to realize my goal of posting more than I did in 2010 (20 times).
I'm currently on trip number four since I got home from Thailand; I've been to Bend, OR, Portland, OR, New York, NY and am now in New Mexico. Nothing to complain about at all, and it's been amazing to see friends and family. If I can say one thing about traveling as much as I do, a little over 1/3 of the time last year, is that it means you've got to do lots of visiting in the time you're home. On the other hand, with all those visits I'm still just learning my way around San Francisco, but all the little cafes, beautiful buildings, green parks, and blooming flowers have won me over so far. I realize this blog claims to be about everywhere but home, but no harm in showing you a little picture of what it's not about.
But as always, on to the next adventure! I'm off to Jakarta, Indonesia on Friday April 8th for about 5 weeks. I'll be doing very similar work to what we did on the Thai/Lao PDR border, except this time in a huge city, with a population of mostly internal migrants who speak Bahasa. I've only spent a few days in Jakarta in the past, so I'm looking forward to getting to know the city, and also have a few friends living there which will be a nice change of pace from my solitary ways.
So, to get back in the blogging spirit, today I thought I'd answer a question that I often get from people when they hear what I do: "Why aren't you in [insert country with disaster/war here]?" There are a number of answers to this, for example, I didn't go to Haiti because a. I don't speak French well enough and b. there were so many people with experience working in Haiti, that my particular expertise wouldn't have been value added. On the other hand, why am I not in Japan? I actually recently got a solicitation for someone to help coordinate psychosocial support for families who have had to leave their homes due to the potential effects of radiation. Sounds like a great gig! But I've got a lot going on, and in fact am currently booked with jobs through the beginning of July. So as much as I'd like to sit around waiting for the next complex emergency to happen so I could be on the ground and part of the professional aid team working there, a girl's got to make a living, and evaluation and research are how I do that. But yes, in the future I hope to be on the emergency rosters of some INGOs who do emergency response (and also have an employer who lets me run off whenever disaster strikes).
But for now I'm dreaming of the delicious food waiting for me in Jakarta, and fingers crossed I learn to do more than order coffee without sugar and noodles with shrimp in Bahasa this time!
As always I appreciate everyone who reads my blog, please feel free to leave comments on the page, email me etc. Also, if you're on the email list and would like to be taken off of it because you have Google Reader now, you check the blog on your own, or secretly don't like me clogging up your inbox, just let me know. I promise I won't hold it against you.
Happy Spring to everyone!