Yesterday, I got a call from Washington, DC.
He – the voice on the other end of the phone – offered me some advice, a little guidance on how I might go about pursuing a career in foreign correspondence and conflict zone reporting.
We’ve never met. In fact, the circumstances leading to the call were a series of happy coincidences, married with a little persistence.
Several weeks ago I went to my weekly Monday-night meeting, where timing and location meant I happened to meet one of my colleague and mentors’ longtime friends. I shared my experiences living on a military base in Wainwright, and my ambitions of coupling travel with journalism on issues that I find matter. He himself had studied journalism in Paris, but ended up furthering his education in international politics and economics.
One of his best friends, however, continued on with journalism, traveled to conflict zones, war zones, and areas of devastation. He now works for the IMF.
After a virtual introduction, a couples of emails, and a emailed resume spell-checked half a dozen times, he agreed to speak with me. And by agreeing to speak with me, I mean he just decided to call. Which takes me to yesterday morning, half-way through a rushed breakfast before heading off to work, staring at my phone trying to figure out whether this call from DC, USA was an automated credit card spam call.
I answered. And about 10 minutes later, I went back to getting ready for work, having possibly made the contact of a lifetime: A professional, talented, and experienced potential sounding board who has lived the career I hope to pursue.
The capitol called yesterday, and along with it, a glimpse of what my future could be.