Moving is said to be one of the most stressful experiences in life — second only to losing a spouse. People who work in international development may move every two years, across great distances, to wildly different climates. Edited from letters to the family, here’s our story of moving from Honolulu, Hawaii to Almaty, Kazakhstan. …

In May 1993, as we were preparing to leave Laos after more than two years, Russell received an invitation from the East-West Center in Hawaii to serve as a Centerwide Fellow. Joking that we hoped the title wasn’t a comment on his waistline, we boarded a plane in Vientiane, our arms filled with flowers from …

As 1992 turned to 1993, we celebrated the New Year with Vientiane friends in Ho Chi Minh City/Saigon and Hanoi. It was fascinating to experience another part of former French Indochina in transition, as the United States and Vietnam worked to restore normalcy after their war. Here are excerpts from letters to family about our …

Russell’s UNDP Foreign Investment Advisory Project had borne fruit as his Lao Team moved from study tours in the region to organizing a conference in Sydney on investing in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. I went along as a volunteer helper during the conference, and then we two added on a vacation in New Zealand. …

Time to share some more stories from others who’ve lived and worked abroad. The peripatetic life means you get to meet a lot of special folks. Here are a few, each one a jewel in my memory. [You can click on the map below in order to enlarge it for a clearer view of where …

As we neared the end of our stay in Vientiane, we had no inkling of where we’d be going next. This circumstance is fairly common for self-employed professionals in international development. You may just go home for a while and hope for short-term assignments, or you may be moving on to the next long-term one. …

I went to Laos knowing I no longer wanted to work as an independent consultant in adult education and media. I saw the posting as a chance to begin to develop skills and a résumé as a writer, a role teachers had been encouraging since high school. Before leaving Virginia, I’d received assurance from the …