Hi – I’m Jenny. I’m constantly trying to balance the odd combo of incurable wanderlust and nesting instincts (which usually leads to incredible amounts of overpacking). I can somehow manage to be stressed even when I am on vacation, so I figure I might just embrace it and take on challenges wherever I am if I’m going to worry anyway. Home is wherever I am at the moment – I have a pretty liberal use of the word – but it also always means MN where my family is. I have an overdeveloped skill of focusing on the people and places I am currently in, which unfortunately means that I am often a terrible long distance communicator – ask my mom. But I’m trying! (hence the blog).
For the past 10 years or so, I have been working in International Development. For those of you not fluent in aid jargon, that basically means I’ve been working with NGOs doing a variety of different kinds of work. I spent my first few years based in Washington, DC but traveling on short assignments to Peru, Bolivia, Guatemala, Venezuela, Eastern Europe Bosnia, East Timor and Indonesia. I wish I’d written more from my travels, but I have great memories! I then worked on longer term contracts based in Rumbek, South Sudan and most recently Monrovia, Liberia. In between, I got my MA in Governance and Development from the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex in Brighton. Phew, I’m tired just thinking about it all!
Currently, I’ve let my travels take a backseat as I’m trying out this whole putting-down-roots thing. Nick and I have just moved back to South Africa (where he is from), and are setting ourselves up in Cape Town. I’m doing a little of this and that – some consulting for NGOs and firms here in SA, some writing, and generally de-compressing and de-stressing after a tough couple of years. I’m sure the travel bug won’t stay in remission long, but for now I’m content!