So here's a short little synopsis of my life: As you may recall, the last time I wrote, I was in some serious despair. Luckily, several knights riding on white stallions came to my rescue, in the form of a new job. In the middle of all of my angst, I received a phone call from one of four people who left Chase's project finance group to join Societe Generale's project finance group, the purpose being to develop the group into a major international player, and they actually wanted to interview me to join them.

Well, the interviews went well (words like, I hate investment banking culture, where anytime anyone makes a mistake, they get yelled at rather than taking that opportunity to actually teach them something...), and they offered me the job, all in the midst of my own job angst. Leaving seemed to be the thing to do at CSFB, as five other people did as well, within three weeks of each other (including our Linda Cangiano). All very exciting. So, I'm essentially angst-free at the moment, pleased with the opportunity that I received and the decision that I made. The only downside is that now that I'm working for the French rather than the Swiss, my fashion sense is definitely joining to have to improve.

[With all this exitement Beth forgot to mention she has a new email address (bethwest@ix.netcom.com), the product of a saturday afternoon shopping for a notebook PC and an evening's worth of phonecalls to technical support. In between there was a saunter amid the dinosaurs of the Museum of Natural History--Stefan]

First, may I thank Gioia and Sebastian for choosing my birthday, and my favourite town, for the day of their wedding, and wish them much happiness.

I shall spend the next 6 (well, 5 1/2) months in Jena, Germany. In case the guys in Sofia cannot figure out how to re-direct my e-mail address, I may be reached at s7paiv@rz.uni-jena.de

Take care

I know that many SAIS alumni have difficult finding work and especially internships so in order to help understand how to go about identifying opportunties, I submit the following. This is how young college-aged students start their job searches in Kyrgyzstan. This young man is informing me for the first time of his interest in my company. I think we can all learn a valuable lesson from this real-life example though I'm not certain what that lesson is.

> Good afternoon!!
> My name is Sapar. I am a second year student of
>Kyrghyz-American school. So I have a business to you. Could you
>offer me a job for summer time, if, of course, it's possible.
>I want to get much more experience from working in such an
>financial organizations, because I want to be a finance guy.
>So send me you comments on it as fast as you can.
>
>Thanks for your attention!!!
>Sincerely Sapar.

I particularly like his clear focus--he wants "to be a finance guy." Anyone still looking for work should feel free to copy this example. Just be sure to replace "finance guy" with your own career goal--"marketing guy", "president guy", "writer guy", etc. You get the point.

Good luck.

The news that Kathy Blake broadcast about Roger Casales deserves a full commentary. Our election campaign was a boring, dreary affair - but the night itself and the day after were incredible.

The Conservatives were destroyed - it was fantastic. Almost as fantastic as watching Matthew Rose's face drop and continue to drop as the first few results came in. He is a true blue supporter; I a Labour man. And we had a very large bet riding on the election: suffice it to say that he owes me a slap-up meal at the best fish restaurant in Britain. But to his eternal credit, almost alone among a throng of die-hard Labour fans, he withstood the meltdown far better than most Conservative MPs.

For a meltdown it was and a joy to behold - as a series of my least favourite politicians were wiped from the political map, including my boss - Malcolm Rifkind. The Foreign Secretary was the most eminent of the Scottish Conservatives to be eradicated in scenes that made Macbeth look like a nursery rhyme. NO Welsh MPs, No Scottish MPs - merely a rump of English nationalists which is what the Conservative Party has now been reduced to. And the great thing is that they just don't get it - even now, some of them are showing just how long headless chickens can appear to live for. Those misfits that somehow managed to survive seem to think that unthinking anti-Europeanism will win them the next election. We hope and pray that the rounds of internecine bloodletting continue - it will make great viewing and ensure that our new masters remain in power for a very long time yet.

In the midst of this mayhem, Roger was elected MP for Wimbledon; yes, Wimbledon. Home to nicely rolled grass and finely rolled vowels; strawberries and cream; hats and cliches galore. It was approximately the 170th most likely seat to go Labour. It is almost the equivalent of DC going Republican. Amazing.

But the night itself was merely the prelude to the extraordinary events the next day. My office has a balcony overlooking Downing Street and so I could watch the clinical, brutal transfer of power. Major's stuff out the back and into a removal lorry, Tony and Cherry-blossom in the front. The scenes were incredible. Perhaps it was run-of-the-mill stuff for the USA where politicians can and do receive star receptions, but here they don't. They may be liked, respected, hated, admired - but Friday morning saw huge scenes of emotion. Raw joy. I think that is the best way to put it. It was a reaction to 18 years of single party rule that had recently gone badly off the rails. And the reaction came out below me in Downing Street as sound cascaded up between the walls of the Foreign Office, No.10 and the Cabinet Office. Chants of Tony, Tony, Tony and endless, rolling noise. He provided the focus for the crowd, so happy to be rid of the other lot... finally. True, they were all Party workers, but it was still great!

Oh, and my Mum saw me on the telly (it made up for the result - she votes tory)

jon

Just to let you know, Roger Casales (MAIA first semester our year in Bologna) was elected as a Labour MP from Wimbledon.
Adriana Cordali sent some email telling me she was in New York with her husband. When I called to ask how long she was planning to stay, she said "forever." Another SAIS graduate settles in the big apple.

Thanks for writing in this past week even if I couldn't update the website right away. I was in Washington DC for a week on a bureau visit (I work for Bridge News) and this time didn't have the tools of the trade with me.

Quick synopsis: Everybody I met seems to be doing very well. As always happens, I randomly ran into SAISers I didn't even know were in town... Matteo Borkowski having lunch at a sidewalk restaurant--he is recovering well from a knee operation following a rather enthusiastic game of soccer--and Sophie Claudet, looking even greater than usual in late afternoon Adams Morgan sunshine.

Tonje Vetleseter's complaints about the men in DC have recently abated... Charles Kenny is paradoxically trying to regain his innocence when it comes to relationships--Catholic guilt?... Manuel Terranova is doing rather better than his VW beetle, and is planning to move to Palo Alto for his job at Xerox (he does their website)... Kathleen Kelly is by all accounts keeping him wrapped around her finger... Martina Ban is succesfully luring many (mostly male) Latin American clients to the consultancy she works for, right above the coolest eurotrash cafe in DC (caffe Sesto, 15th and K). We had a great night out with Manuel at a concert at the 9:30 club, thanks in no small part to our elective affinity for gin and tonics... Makram Ouaiss is working too hard, as usual...

Zach Messitte won against me at backgammon. We played for high stakes: I now owe him infinite respect.

Howdy!

First of all, note the new e-mail address. I've fallen in love, taken the plunge and changed my name. ...I'm now awaiting further instruction from Personnagio.

After several months of wedding planning syndrome (the symptoms of which bear a remarkable similarity to PMS -- extreme crabbiness, random outbursts of tears, giving in to the desire to eat entire double-batches of cookies, etc...poor Jim) our wedding was damn good! We kept it very small (but to anyone who might feel slighted, I swear your invitation just got lost in the mail). The day was perfect, the chapel was perfect, the ceremony was perfect, and the reception was damn fun. We abandoned our guests the next day and took off for the best 3800 kilometer road trippin' honeymoon imaginable.

Four weeks into it, I'd like to verify that "wedded bliss" does, in fact, exist. So for the benefit of those of you lamenting your cronic singleness, I might suggest that you actually go on a date with that cute guy/girl who's been in hot pursuit despite your repetition of "I just want to be friends". Who knows....

Please add me to the SAIS mailbox. I'm thrilled to connect with SAISers around the globe! I have recently married and have given up the Goodwin name for my mother's maiden name of Carraher. Several classmates were at the wedding last August on Lake George, NY. I am living in Boston and have just started working for Citizens Power, a power marketer, as an Energy Analyst. I often am nostalgic for those Bolognese memories and see many friends in the DC area. Jenny Gayer was here last weekend and made me revisit our nation's short history in a walk along the Freedom Trail. Hope all is well with you. The site looks fantastic!! [Thanks!--Stefan]

Shawn

Life is great out here in Northern California, although I am getting a little sick of all the sun. SAIS seems far away, both intellectually and geographically. I started out flying to Beijing for a week every month--great for the 1k account, bad for the sleep rhythms. It became apparent after a few months that our money would get a better a return in a checking account than it would in Beijing, so we pulled the plug. I've been to Tokyo a few times and seen several SIASers, including John Chesen (PanAmSat), Chris Reidl (ING-Barings) and Mark Tannenbaum (Bloomberg Business News). They are all doing very well. Tokyo is great, provided someone else is paying. I've also seen all the SAIS bankers in Hong Kong (too many to mention, but all doing well)

I'm now in charge of a pretty big Internet site--www.dbc.com. We provide financial news and information, so if you need to check your portfolio come pay us a visit. I must say I miss thinking about the "bigger issues", but working on the Web is very cool, once you can cut through all the hype. I still get my Foreign Affairs and Foreign Policy, but I''ve noticed that every issue takes me a little longer to get through.

Cheers

Just wanted to write and update everyone; Jenny Gayer, Hazlyn Fortune and I got together with Marilyn (Laurenzano) von Hoenning-O'Carroll last night at her parents and got to see her beautiful daughter, Angelina. Janos was there, of course; the family looks great and seems to be doing well, but I'll let Marilyn update you on that.

All is well here. Adam and I just celebrated our "demi-anniversary" (6 months together) and went to Arena Stage to see "Sunday in the Park with George." (Personal review: unless you REALLY like Sondheim, it's probably not worth it, but we had fun anyway.)

I'm sorry so many of you are down or experiencing angst or ennui or whatever you care to call it. I know that, when in that state, hearing friends' banal stories of happiness and cheer doesn't necessarily cheer most people. Therefore, I shall keep my satisfaction with my job and personal life more or less to myself. I wish everyone the best of luck in finding jobs and/or significant others that/who make them happy, however.

Take it easy and keep writing; this is a great way to keep in touch, if only peripherally.

Ciao! Monica

I can't remember when I last submitted anything to the page so it's hard to know where to begin. The most recent change for me was my resignation from my current position as a policy analyst for an energy consulting firm in Washington DC. I decided that the politics in a small firm with weak management was more than my patience could stand. So I'm on the hunt for a new job.

Typically major changes like this one make my worry factor go over acceptable levels but it was so clear that things as they stood were not working out that I'm calmly figuring out how to pay the rent and get those letters and interviews set up. I've also decided to try to find a position in California (preferrably the SF Bay area) since there is where the action is these days in states which are restructuring their energy sector.

A shift from the East to the West coast is a major thing, but I really feel I need the change. If only for a few years. My last day at work will be May 15th so my e-mail address will change soon. Like many of you, I await with great anticipation "The Wedding" in Bologna this May. My finances are strained but what else is new. Until I find that rich, handsome Japanese guy in my future this is my lot.

Ivette and I live in Capitol Hill right now, so far so good in the murder Capitol of the U.S. I'm looking forward to leaving DC, for all its problems I prefer NYC. If anyone knows of jobs in the energy sector in the San Francisco area, please let me know. I promise to keep in touch.

Ciao for now. ;) Hazlyn