Wednesday, July 4, 2012

July 4, 2012 - Working Mom

Ok, ok..."working mom" is a bit of a stretch.  But I did get a part-time job and started working this week.  I am doing a contract through a woman I know with her own consulting business and it is for Newark Public Schools.  It is nothing too exciting: 20 hours a weeks working on data related to teacher recruitment until October.  But it is good for my brain!  And a little extra income surely never hurt.  Today is day 3 and I am still trying to figure out how to fit 4 working hours into my schedule with Rose and the kids, while still getting errands and meals done.  That is also a good intellectual/logistical exercise. Now that our house is done and the kids are pretty well settled here (and one of these I will do a photo tour of our home on here!) I am ready for something else to do...although maybe timing it just before the arrival of my in-laws was not the smartest (I hope they don't mind!).  I am also hoping that if they like my work, it could lead to more contracts in the future.  And it is so much easier to do work "in" America where I don't have to deal with work visas and permits and all that.

To be honest, I have been looking for work since we got here because I knew it would take a while to find something.  I have signed up to be a substitute teacher at the international school here starting at the end of August.  I look forward to getting into a classroom, even on such a temporary and "not really a teacher" basis.  And who knows what opportunities it could lead to for the duration of our life in Dar.  The school is 2 minutes from our house and is next door to Grace & Noah's school.  It will be a totally flexible gig and I am happy about that too.

But I also interviewed with two different governmental development agencies (like America's USAID but for two other big western countries) for educational policy positions working directly with the Government of Tanzania.  The jobs were interesting and I was more than partially qualified given the work I did in Kenya for UNICEF.  I think they were interested in my background and education (biggest benefit of going to Harvard, I guess, is that it makes people notice your resume a lot more!).  Both jobs were very full time, however, which is not quite what I am ready for, and both jobs would require a lot more Kiswahili than I could manage.  But it was a great networking exercise and good experience for me to go through two rounds of interviews for each of those jobs.  I regret that the organizations were not a bit more professional, as they have surely filled each position by now but never notified me that I didn't get the job (they both assured me they would let me know either way...but that was months ago!).  That is pretty rude given how much time I spent interviewing for the jobs (one of the interviews was 6 hours of my time...6 different stages to the interview!).  At least I have found something else that is a better fit for now and I like being open to whatever opportunities I might find (and the job I started this week came through on Facebook!).

So is a new juggling act over here.  I think my favorite part of working so far is that when I tell Grace I am going upstairs to work she tells me, "Don't forget to put your money in your piggy bank when you're all done!"  

Happy 4th to everyone at's just another day at the office here in Dar!


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