Monthly Archives: August 2013

Stronger Beer

I heard this country song about the differences between Canada and the United States on the radio today and it made me laugh, so I figured it was worth a share. 🙂

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Filed under Canada, Observation of the Day, Ottawa


I have to admit that I’ve been feeling a little homesick lately.  I really, really like Ottawa and I have no complaints about living here.  At least, not during the summer. 😉  It’s been a wonderful place to work, to relearn how to live a more normal life after two years of being on edge in Juarez, and to live.  While there are certainly some differences and Canadians will be quick to point out those differences sometimes, there are a lot of the same shows on TV, I can find just about any U.S. product I’d want in the grocery store, most things function similarly to the United States, most everyone I run in to has some connection to the United States like a relative living there or a house in Florida, etc.  So, it’s certainly not a difficult place to live, except perhaps when it’s -20 outside.

But, it’s not home.  There were no bluebonnets in March (unless they were secretly hiding underneath the snow, which I doubt), there’s no Shiner Bock in the grocery store here, the leaves are already turning (in August!?!?!), and no one wears cowboy boots anywhere.  Most of all though, my family and friends from home aren’t here.  So, I’ve been feeling a bit homesick.  Hopefully, I can snap out of it soon.  I do have some trips in Canada and in the U.S. planned for this fall, so perhaps getting out and about a bit more will help. 🙂

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Filed under Austin, Canada, Home, Homesick, Ottawa, Texas

Dumb Ways to Die

Because this cracks me up every time…

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Filed under Canada, Ottawa

Bid list! I has it!

So, the summer mid-level bid lists have been released and now I can see what has made it on to the list.  State has a newish projected vacancy tool where you can search for jobs that are scheduled to be on different lists, so I had an idea of what would be on the list, but it’s a relief to have the actual list and to see what’s on it.  There weren’t too many surprises and most of the jobs I’d been eying turned up on the list, plus at least one job of interest that I hadn’t seen on the projected list.

I’ve been reaching out to the people who are in the jobs I’m interested in now and it’s been interesting to learn about the jobs and there’s a lot to get excited about.  It’s also interesting to get a sense of the people in the jobs, and the supervisors in a few cases where there’s no one in the job right now.  Due to the rotational nature of the Foreign Service, I definitely won’t work with the incumbent and might not work with the supervisor, especially if I had to learn a new language, but you start to get a feel for the job, office and such by talking to them.  So, a couple of jobs that sounded great from the description and/or from reading post reports of the cities sound a little less great (so far nothing’s actually been bad) and some that I had initially thought wouldn’t be as interesting have sounded more interesting as I’ve learned more about them.

That’s more or less as far as I’ve gotten in bidding so far, but the list has only been out 2 days.  Eventually, I’ll have to convince someone to actually offer me a job, which is the hard part!  I don’t want to jinx anything, so I won’t post the jobs/places I’m interested in, but I’m sure this won’t be my last post on bidding.

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Filed under Bidding, Canada, Ottawa