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The three-day summit, where the accession of Balkan countries to the EU is a key item, ends on June 22

Posted by RajeevKumar

The three-day summit, where the accession of Balkan countries to the EU is a key item, ends on June 22

And now let’s go south a little, to Thessalonika where the EU is having a big meeting to decide on it’s constitution, and Bulgaria is looking for an accession timetable, but things don’t seem to be too promising. Incidentally, note the growing Spanish connection at the end, as I am trying to suggest, this may be more than mere coincidence. Solomon Passi is Bulgaria’s foreign minister.

Bulgaria and Romania were not invited to join the EU in along with 10 other eastern and southern European nations because of their slow economic progress, but hope to join in 2007.

Passi said that it would not be easy for the EU to recognise 2004 as the year to end negotiations, but this would create a positive precedent if it happened, Bulgarian National Radio said. “The other countries which joined the EU did not have any dates fixed in advance. I cannot promise at this time that we would be able to achieve this goal, but if we are not successful now, we will have to try again at the summit meeting in Rome at the end of the year”, he told BNR in an interview.

Passi was speaking just a day after he returned from Brussels where he paid a working visit to EU headquarters. (more…)

Um, I had wished for my family to experience what I was experiencing

Posted by RajeevKumar

Um, I had wished for my family to experience what I was experiencing

It makes me smile because one of the most, um, one of the most profound things that might international experiences have had on me is my, um, spiritual growth.

Um, and there were times where I, um, was filled with so much joy and a little bit of guilt that, “Why was I having these amazing experiences?

Will my siblings ever get to, you know, hike this hot air balloon like I did or climb at the top of this mountain or, you know, pray at this beautiful Blue Mosque or, you know, lay, um, you know, see these centuries old, um, uh, ruins from the Greek and Roman times?”

And so I just wanted to share my experiences, you know, with, with my family. Um, and it was a craving for both, you know, um, company and it was a craving thing for a desire to make, uh, my experiences available to others.

When I was in Turkey, uh, on this Fulbright Fellowship, um, we had some State Department officials come and talk to us about careers in international affairs. There was also a meet-and-greet with the U.S. Ambassador to Turkey. Um, and both of those two things together helped me realize, “Huh! So you can live abroad and get paid for it and, you know, learn different languages and not sit in an office? This sounds really cool. Sign me up.”

Um, it sounds perhaps, um, you know, a, a throw away wish, but while I was in Turkey, um, and even though I had a roommate and incredible colleagues with whom I was traveling, um, there were times where I felt very lonely

Um, when I ran across the Pickering Fellowship, um, I, it was ironic because I, I remember knowing or, you know, being familiar with that name. (more…)

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