Friday, July 25, 2014

Ukraine Jayne

Hey, it rhymes!

Yes, I'm going to Kiev, Ukraine, for two months - all but two days in August and all of September. I'll return to the USA oh-so-briefly, then head back to Europe for an already-planned-and-booked vacation in Germany. So, I'll pretty much not be in the USA for three months.

I'll be posting about the professional part of my work here, as well as on all my various social media channels. Here's more about the job.

I'm so looking forward to getting to do this kind of work again! I'm excited, I'm nervous, I'm thrilled, I'm scared - not of the political situation in Ukraine but of meeting the expectations of this job! It's a terrific opportunity for me professionally, and I'm so lucky to have a husband who is thrilled for me to get this chance to do this work again and to visit a city we've both heard amazing things about.

It's going to be so different than some of the other work I've done in other countries: I'll get to go out to dinner at night if I want, there won't be armed guards at the groceries, I won't have to wear a head scarf... woot!

Of course, this job comes at a cost:

  • I will miss Government Cheese in Nashville and all of the wonderful people going to that concert that I was SO looking forward to seeing. I haven't seen the Cheese since just a couple of years after I graduated from WKU, way back in the 1800s or something. Anyone want to buy my ticket?
  • I won’t get to meet someone I've known online for a very long time but haven't met face-to-face, that I was SO looking forward to meeting (don't worry, it's not creepy)
  • I don’t get to help out my Mom as I hoped to in August
  • I don’t get to go drinking with my friend Carol back in my hometown in August and catch up on the 30 years since I left 
  • I don't get to go to Austin, Texas - my spiritual home - in September (flights already booked)
  • I will miss all of my tomato crop (I've had ONE so far)
  • I'll miss September and October, two of the very prettiest months here in the Pacific Northwest. I'll be missing great weather, and lots of great motorcycle riding. 
  • I'll miss my husband and not-my-cat terribly

That's the cost of doing this type of short-term work overseas - it never happens at a convenient time, and you can't anticipate it - it just happens, BOOM.

The worst part, though, is Delta Airlines: I already have a roundtrip ticket booked with them for Germany, for a vacation with Stefan. My Ukraine contract ends just three days before I was to arrive in Germany from the USA in October. You would think Delta would simply let me keep that ticket - already paid for - and then just not use the USA to Germany part, allowing me to simply buy a flight from Kiev to Frankfurt, and then using just the return ticket - again, it's all already paid for. And you would be WRONG. Unless I fly out from the USA to Germany, I would pay almost $5000 for the flight back from Germany to the USA! If I don't show up for the outbound flight, they will cancel my return ticket! So I have to fly all the way back to the USA from Ukraine, stay TWO days, and get right back on a plane for Europe. Can you believe it?!? There is no logic for this. None. None whatsoever.


That's my big news. And once this job is over, I will have, at last, pulled in a yearly income in 2014 above the poverty line, for the first time since moving back to the USA in 2009! Woot! Of course, 80% of the income has been European...

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