Monday, September 15, 2014

I Met the American Ambassador

Ambassador Krajeski was very welcoming.
The American Ambassador to Bahrain is Thomas C. Krajeski and I was honored to meet him Monday morning at the American Women’s Association’s (AWA) general meeting.  This meeting celebrated the 40th anniversary of the AWA in Bahrain and it was quite an affair.

Previous to arriving in Bahrain, I had two friends tell me that I definitely needed to join the AWA and participate in their activities.  They were so right! 

The AWA in Bahrain has been a social and charitable group since 1974.  There are currently over 230 members from all nationalities. For expat women moving to Bahrain, this group is a great way to meet other expats and learn more about the Island. 

They have groups for just about every interest, they take tours all over the island and even plan trips for expat women to other countries.  They also have a band of volunteers who coordinate charitable contributions to more than 30 nonprofit organizations in Bahrain every year.

Whether you have an interest is food, art, books, culture or service, you will find a group in AWA for you. The only problem is choosing the ones where you want to participate.

Both the American Ambassador, Thomas C. Krajeski and his wife attended this special meeting.  Ambassador Krajeski spoke to the group about the value of community service and his history of service. AWA is definitely a great organization that gives much to the Bahrain community.

Ambassador Krajeski told the AWA group he recently attended the change of command for two branches of the US Military in Bahrain.  He spoke of the contributions these young men and women give in service to their country.  He was extremely candid and told the group that he refused to serve in Vietnam when he was younger however was proud of his service in the US Foreign Service which began in 1979.

I really enjoyed hearing about his history and achievements.  After the meeting we did meet one on one and I warned him I would be blogging about him.

I went to this AWA meeting with another expat wife of a Jacob’s employee, Diana Wilson. As it turns out, Ambassador Krajeski was Ambassador to the Republic Yemen not long after she designed the American Ambassador’s residence in Yemen.  It is truly a small world.  They had a great conversation about that coincidence.  He told Diana he wanted to be a landscape architect when he young.

Diana with Ambassador Krajeski and Ambassador Demirer
Also attending the AWA meeting was Ambassador Hatun Demirer, Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey.  This wonderful woman was fascinating.  When she was only 12, she received a scholarship from an organization in Turkey like the AWA in Bahrain.  The scholarship enabled her to go on to complete her degree in college and led her on the path she took for her career. 

Ambassador Demirer shared her touching story and how much a scholarship changed her life.
Ambassador Demirer spoke very passionately about her belief that women can shape the world if they are given the opportunity and education.

One of the points that Ambassador Demirer stressed was that women wear many hats and that makes them unique.  I have often said that very same thing. Moms must multitask every day.

Ambassador Demirer went on to say that in order for women to obtain equal positions in the world they need access to education. 

Something that is extremely apparent in the Middle East is that women here are fighting for equality.  They do not have the same freedoms that we have in the United States.  I think US women are very privileged and they don’t really know it.  In fact, Americans in general are very privileged.  The rest of the world has not even come close to having equality for women in the same range as we have in the US.

Education is powerful and we should all support helping women become more educated in all countries. We live in a global community and what effects one country will have impact on other countries.

One surprise highlight of the morning was a visitor to the group that I was not expecting. Photographer Andrew Weaver was at the meeting to present a copy of his new book to the group.  Andrew has published 2 stunning books of photographs of the Kingdom of Bahrain.

One of the very first things I purchased after arriving in Bahrain was his book Between To Seas.  It is breathtakingly beautiful pictures of Bahrain and proudly sits on my livingroom coffee table.  The second book, Above Two Seas was just released.  I was very excited to meet Andrew and tell him how much I admire his work.  He told me he is getting ready to release another book of sunset photographs.  He offered to include one of mine if I had a wonderful sunset shot in Bahrain.  Unfortunately I have not seen a good sunset yet.  I can not wait to see his sunset book as I am sure his photos will be amazing.  I suggested he do a book on sunrises in Bahrain. I have several great sunrise shots.  :-)

I was thrilled to have the opportunity to vist with Andrew Weaver
It was a very enjoyable morning.  It was great to be around other American women and to meet these two very outstanding people that are serving their countries in the Kingdom of Bahrain.  And, to meet Andrew was a fantastic surprise. Gee whiz – and I was there!


Sunrises can be beautiful as well. A good one starts the day off telling you life is good.

No comments:

Post a Comment