Matamoros, Mexico: Washington, D.C.:

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Training in DC

First things first: Yes, I'm aware that I haven't posted in the past two months. My apologies to those of you who emailed me asking whether or not I had been kidnapped by drug traffickers or if the tigers had gotten me. Rest assured that neither of the two happened. I'll try harder to keep up with y'all.

I've been in DC for the past week for some training. Now, the Foreign Service seems to be generally pro-training, in the sense that managers and bureaus greatly support the idea of both on-the-job training and taking courses back at the Foreign Service Institute in Arlington, VA. Whether or not you actually get the opportunity to come back from your overseas post for training depends almost wholly on money. If you're in the middle of nowhere and it takes almost 48 hours to fly back to DC (and, subsequently, thousands of dollars), you may find some Debbie Downers or Negative Nathans out there who point out that the State Department's budget is already getting slashed in the FY'12 budget. (Which, I'd like to point out, still hasn't been passed. Good job,  Congress.) How could we afford to send you back to DC in this budget climate?, they may ask. Or, as may be the case in smaller posts, how could we survive without you being here?