Friday, December 6, 2013


After Andrew bidding his heart out for our family to go to the best place we could imagine given the bid list that existed, we found ourselves in shock today with the actual assignment.  For most of you that I know personally that read my blog, you are most likely as unfamiliar with the process of "bidding" for a USAID employee as I was until this all happened over the last several months.  What happens is a list comes out around August/September with possible open positions in your field and the employee has to advocate for him or herself to get the best match for their qualifications and personal life situation.  We had a few good looking posts considering we will only be going to development posts, but the very scary reality of it all was that there were fewer positions for bidders and at least, and maybe half were for Afghanistan or Pakistan, and a little Haiti thrown in the mix.

Andrew did a great job of reaching out to posts he was interested in and did nearly ten phone interviews, and had "air kisses" with at least one.  That means they put him first on their list and he did the same.  There were others that wanted him to put them first, but he didn't and put his top 8 or so posts in ranking order.

We thought we were going to the "air kiss" post up until today when the list is sent via the intranet and he logged in and we read it together and were shocked.  Not to say that we weren't happy, but we were just shocked because we thought we were going to the "air kiss" post.

That being said, we are happy to find out after processing the news for about 13 hours that we will be moving to Nairobi, Kenya in August for the next 4 years.  It has started to sink in and thanks to the positive support from family and friends, I really do think that this is the best move for us and that career-wise it is great for Andrew.

Here in Dhaka, the political situation has been deteriorating day by day and gas stations are running out of gas, shelves are starting to get bare, and the people in power don't seem to care that they are making a pathetic living situation for most regular folks, many of whom are lucky to live on a dollar a day that much more unbearable because they cannot go to work because there are no safe transportation options because buses are getting set on fire and people are getting caught in the stupid thuggish crosshairs of "rebellion" and definite agitation and aggression.  This is not making it into the main stream media, but here is a brief history of the reasoning behind this nonsense, plus two local online newspapers if you would like to keep up to date with the state of affairs here and now.

Another thing to seriously keep in mind is that this is a country where most people are lucky to make the equivalent of 80 dollars a month working in a garment factory as chronicled on Planet Money's latest story of Planet Money Makes a T-Shirt.  It gives you some perspective of the process and the people that it takes just to make a t-shirt.

Much love to you all out there and I hope I can keep posting and most of it will be retrospective because nothing much is happening these days to write about due to countrywide strikes and blockades.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Carrie! You should definitely be happy to come to Nairobi. For all its faults there are incredible opportunities and amazing things to see and do. Kenya is an absolutely spectacular country that it is difficult not to love. If you have any questions feel free to drop me a line and I'll do my best to answer them or put you in touch with someone who can!