Saturday, April 28, 2007

A move overseas for me!

O.k. so about two weeks ago I received an amazing e-mail that basically said I was chosen by the Sewelanka Foundation in Sri Lanka to be the next manager of their environmental program. The reason this was an amazing e-mail: I have been looking for a new job for more than two years. I completed a masters degree in environmental science from Johns Hopkins University in May 2005, with the course work having been completed in Dec. 2004. I got that degree basically to get a program job in wildlife conservation, but I was willing to do any program work that was focused on something environmental. And I've been applying to jobs for all things environmental. I've had many, many interviews, one company even flew me to Boston (where I quickly herniated a disk in my neck, but that is another story). Everyone basically said I was incredibly qualified academically and it was wonderful that I was a grantwriter, but I just didn't have enough field work.

Anyway, now I have a program job in Sri Lanka. This is the best job for which I've applied and I got it. I guess all those rejections were just helping me wait for a more appropriate position in regards to my personal interests.

So now I'm packing. It is crazy how much work there is in preparing to leave the country for 1-2 years. I have to store the items I've collected in my life that I'd like to keep. I have to sell or give away all the other stuff. I need to go visit family to say goodbye until Christmas. I need to figure out my finances (which means changing banks).

I've completed some tasks -- I told work I quit (ha!); I told my landlady I was breaking the lease; I've ordered Skype welcome packets for my family so we can talk to each other for free; I've started this blog; I've copied all my computer files to an external hard drive. Yet, I still feel overwhelmed.

You can probably tell by now, I ramble. That is why I've started this my friends don't feel like they have to respond to every e-mail I send about my life in Sri Lanka. A blog enables those who are interested to come in and read what I have to say when they feel like it and not be bogged down by constant mass e-mails from me every time I see an elephant.

Which comes to the name of my blog. I'll be an expat, of course, while in Sri Lanka, thus the expat part. Elephants were once considered sacred in Sri Lanka and since they were very well protected, there is a fairly healthy population on the island. So I have very high expectations of seeing them, particularly since I will be working on endangered species.

So visit often. I tend to write a lot when I'm just dumping information out of my head.


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