Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Preparing for Re-entry

Much of my time lately has been spent thinking about how my life will change after I retire from the Foreign Service.  I start out thinking about what I will miss once I no longer have the opportunity to travel around the world…and what I won’t miss.  Then I think about things I will once again enjoy once I’m back in Texas, as well as the things I will once again have to pay for.  Then I’ll start looking through all my notes and emails I’ve printed out (sorry trees) and wonder just what will slip through the cracks and not get done in time.  The list of names of people I’ve been referred to for answers in Washington is long and through persistence and plain old stubbornness, I have become quite the pest.  At this point, I reach for another glass of wine.

Last week a huge problem was solved.  One of my worries was how I was going to get my car from Washington to Fort Worth, Texas.  It’s been in storage there since April 2012 and because of my status here in Pakistan (Temporary Duty out of DC), I am not entitled to have my car shipped with the hundreds of pounds of household effects that are also in DC in storage.  About 2 weeks ago I began to work on this.  Think of this…the car has been in storage for over 2 years. It has no plates on it as I bought it in Texas and immediately had it shipped to Oman. My Texas driver license will expire before I even arrive in DC.  And at age 65, the thought of driving halfway across the country was giving me major concern.  After explaining my case to my CDO (Career Development Officer) in DC, she gave me the name of a person to send an email to.  I did this.  He asked me to send a copy of my driver’s license…I’m sure this was to make sure I was being totally honest about it being expired.  The next morning when I checked my email, there it was…an email from him saying he would approve shipping my car.  Victory!  It was so nice to check that box and not have to worry about the cost of shipping it.  I'll have enough ‘costs’ as it is when I return without having to worry about shipping costs for my car.  Score one for Debi!

In a week I’ll be home getting ready to go house hunting for my new permanent home. I can’t wait…I've lived the life of world traveler long enough.  Time to settle down…again.  

Earlier this month, we had Family Day at the Consulate. It was a great day.  I did 2 things I've never done before...I held a snake and made cotton candy.  The picture below was the teaser one with the handler holding the snake.  I did finally open my hand and held it...

And the cotton candy, first I've had in years, was real tasty!

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