Thursday, November 19, 2009

New Job!

I started my new job on Wednesday (4 November) and it’s been a whirlwind of a few days! I worked in the office for 3 days (full of meetings and conference calls…whew) and then hopped on a plane for South Africa and Zimbabwe! I’m feeling like I’m in a little over my head!

Though I haven’t been in the new position long, I think I am really going to love it. My boss (Ambassador Eric Bost) is fantastic. I know that I will learn a tremendous amount from him and will enjoy working with him. Don’t get me wrong, it will be a lot of work, but I’m looking forward to it. Since this position is university-wide, I think I’ll have a steep learning curve in the beginning. I’ve enjoyed working in agriculture, but it will be nice to have a slight change in “scenery,” if you know what I mean.

My initial priorities will include: developing a strategic plan for the Office of Global Initiatives; developing a campus wide India Strategy; programs for South Africa and Zimbabwe (thus the trip); Bahrain opportunities (exchange program and energy institute); developing new promotional pieces; and many more! Needless to say, I’ll have my hands full.

I will be traveling quite a bit, which will be nice. In early 2010, I’ll be traveling to India, Bahrain, Liberia and Ghana. The good news is, the trips won’t be very long! And, Aaron and I have talked about him coming along with me on a couple of trips, which would be AWESOME!!!

I’ll definitely try to keep my blog updated as I travel to new places and take on new adventures (no promises, as I’m not very good at this!).

Kiss Me I'm Irish!!!

Kiss Me, I’m Irish…

Well, not really, but that’s okay! I don’t even know where to begin on our trip to Ireland! In a nutshell it was amazing, which is an extreme understatement! Ash and I had a wonderful time!

A Rundown of Our Trip:

Two Days in NYC
o Dylan’s Candy Bar (aka heaven)
o Serendipity 3 frozen hot chocolate!!!! (we channeled our inner Kate Beckinsale)
o DUCK TOUR—if you ever go, take a rain coat because you get wet!)

Five Days in Dublin (Thanks Fado!)
o Guinness Brewery
o Jameson Distillery
o City Tour
o Book of Kells/Trinity College
o Musical Pub Crawl (HIGHLY recommend this!)
o St. Aedon Church
o Christ Church
o St. Patrick’s Cathedral
o Glendaloch (aka where my favorite movie PS I love You was filmed….ah….sigh)
o Wicklow Mountains
o Kilkenny—Kilkenny Castle, Paris, Texas Bar (yes, there was one!) and the sweater shop
o Grafton Street Area
o Parks
o Pubs Galore!

Three Days in Galway
o Aran Islands (Inis Mor)
o Connamara
o Spanish Arch
o More Pubs…..

Some of Our Favorites:
• The people….they’re great!
• The food…every Texan should love the food, it’s meat and potatoes….and seafood
• Beautiful scenery everywhere—vibrant colors, lush agriculture, untouched lands, etc etc etc
• Old Irish tour guide in Inis Mor (“across the bay on the Connemara”….makes me laugh just thinking about it!)
• “Be careful what you wish for, my love”
• Central Park Club (not really our fav but it was really funny….we felt 18 again!)

The Favorites list could go on and on and on. We loved it all! I’ll post a few pics here and will try to download the rest onto shutterfly (be warned between the two of us we took about a 1000 pics!). There are lots more to come....and I'll label the future pics....not enough time right now :)

Ash, thank you for being such a wonderful, thoughtful and caring best friend. I don’t know what I’d do without you! This trip was amazing—I look forward to planning our next trip back….maybe for your 30th?!