Dating foreign service

Parking tickets had me rolling! I just got one for parking on a side street that had no marked signs saying, "no parking".

Single at Heart

Apparently in Japan it is at the discretion of the local authorities to ticket a car as "abandoned" if it is parked on the street after a certain hour and cocktails ran late. Kind of in line with 3, a lot of people assume that because we travel a lot, even when it's work related, that we must be "rich. All views expressed on this blog are entirely my own, and are not meant to represent U.

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I've got the Foreign Service blues |

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April 9, at April 9, at 7: April 9, at 1: April 9, at 2: And how do I start making myself ready for a substantive relationship? This is not just a question but the beginning of a story. A story begins when somebody decides, I don't want to live this way anymore. I'm going to change my life. We like to meet a protagonist on the brink of change. We like to enter the story when a character is packing a suitcase.

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Where are you going in such a hurry? What has led up to this point and what comes next? The beginnings are clear. You made a bargain. You held up your end.

But it's been tough. Now it's time for something new. If this were a thriller, upon your return to the U. You would begin an epic battle. We'd be on your side. Somewhere in the novelization of your life, there would be a dramatic flashback to the deal you made, the doubts you had, the sacrifices you endured to have your graduate studies subsidized.

Enough with the glamour and intrigue. This diplomat wants to come home

It would tell us much about your character -- how you think about things, where you come from, what your big dreams are and your big fears, although we get a good sense of you just from the letter. But this is not a thriller. This is your life. All you want is a job outside the government. We were hoping for a knife fight in an alley with the trusted official with whom you had worked closely for years, whom you always suspected of double-dealing.

We were hoping for coded messages and clandestine liaisons; we want torrid affairs and high-tech gizmos. I'm just saying, it's an interesting letter. If you don't want to write the thriller, let's at least help you get a job outside the government, a decent boyfriend and a flat in the Bay Area or New York. Foreign companies that operate in the U. I find that the single FSOs will coordinate events with each other and will assume that since I have a child, I would not want to attend. The married families will coordinate events with other families and not invite a single parent me because they think I would not want to attend.

So as a divorced, single parent I am an anomaly; however, I own it entirely.

Single in the Foreign Service: Heather Steil Blogs from Afghanistan

That is the internal dynamics of the FSO world. I am never boxed in. Life is what you make of it: Oh, living single while in the Foreign Service I moved abroad single and was able to date while being abroad, both inside and outside the embassy. I see it this way: You can make the most of your time anywhere, or you can choose to be miserable. Is it a challenge to be single? But there are also benefits that I experienced. I find that there is beauty both in being single and having a partner.

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  5. I would also say that having dated a local was a great experience. Had it not been for that person, there are places, things, food and people I would never have enjoyed. Open yourself up, give the county a chance; enjoy all the great things the people have to offer. My first two tours overseas, I was as happy as I could be—socializing after work five or six nights a week, traveling constantly, accepting every invitation I received.

    I really made some great friends, both among locals and within the embassy, and sucked the proverbial marrow out of my experiences. When I returned to Washington for several years, I reconnected with long-time friends from college who lived in the area and spent considerable time investing in those relationships.

    I started to dread the thought of picking up and rebuilding my social network, once again; the idea actually tired me out, when it had once invigorated me. At the very least, I likely would have spent considerable portions of my career in Washington, a place that feels very much like home and where I have a well-established group of trusted friends.

    However, having a partner to navigate this topsy-turvy career has made subsequent transitions much smoother. For me, making transitions together with my husband alleviates some of the stress caused by the constant change. Right now I am back in the United States about to go to court to get divorced. I have observed that the Foreign Service can uncover problems in a marriage. When overseas, the non-working spouse has to find their own way.

    It is a difficult problem for many to have too much free time.