My work now requires that I travel more regularly, often to places where large populations are struggling with their environments, the world's economic structure, their neighbors, their own governments and the way they are portrayed in the media. The projects I am working on are currently under the auspices of some large international aid and development agencies--most of which are prisoners to protocol, moderation and politics. The observations and recommendations that I am retained to make for these entities are highly focused on project outcomes. All of this travel and collaboration results in a considerable surplus of peripheral experience and critical thought that is not necessarily appropriate in my professional circles.
So, this blog will be an opportunity to share what I think is most important, outrageous, beautiful and strange. It will also include some posts of a potentially more mundane variety: updates on the process of moving from a stable, salaried existence in New York City to a less predictable life in Liberia on the western coast of Africa.
But, I have meant to start writing for a couple of years now and it would be remiss not to acknowledge the person who gave me the final push towards getting started again. My grandmother is graciously allowing herself to be treated for Alzheimer's, which involves more time apart from her husband and her family than she has ever spent. She has never asked me to do anything for her; but, after hearing about some work that I am doing in Palestine, she requested that I start blogging. That seems reasonable to me and her timing is perfect.