Wednesday, November 7, 2012

прием с послом

While we were on our каникулы in the Baltics, Annie, Kyle, and I received an exciting e-mail; one that made us drop all plans for the evening of November 6, including our tickets to the opera.  Ambassador Michael McFaul and his wife, Donna Norton, requested our attendance at a reception celebrating the conclusion of the 2012 presidential election!

For those who don't know, I have been considering a career in the Foreign Service ever since I researched Ambassador George Kennan and his Containment Policy for the National History Day competition.  The opportunity to meet with the current U.S. Ambassador to Moscow and mingle with his colleagues was просто мечта.

Despite the сильный дождь, Annie, Patrick, Kyle, and I set out in our finest attire for the прием at the Ambassador's residence, Spaso House.
Interior of Spaso House
Spaso House was a hubbub of excited conversation when we arrived.  Diplomats, politicians, and public figures from both Russia and America mingled over cocktails throughout the lower level of the impressive residence.  We enjoyed reconnecting with Stanford alumni currently stationed in Moscow and previous acquaintances from both Justin's Big Game party and the voting event we attended in October.

Not long after our arrival, Ambassador McFaul gave a speech to the assembled guests.  He spoke in Russian, but with a thick American accent and not without some difficulty.  Apparently, there is hope for me yet.

Later in the evening, Justin, a Stanford alum working in the Foreign Service kindly introduced us to Ambassador McFaul.  I could not believe it.  There I was, in Moscow, speaking with the Ambassador!  I was a bundle or nerves; however, Ambassador McFaul had a very approachable demeanor that made conversation easy and comradely.  We spoke about Stanford, his hopes for the election, and his life in Moscow.

I was honored that he would take time out of his busy social schedule to speak with us, and for quite a considerable amount of time too.
Annie, Kyle, Patrick, and I meet Ambassador McFaul!

Still beaming from our meeting, we took photos with the cardboard cutouts of the candidates and spoke with other attendees.

When the party ended, we went to the Starlight Diner, Russia's interpretation of an American diner and celebrated our momentous evening with milkshakes and bacon-cheese fries.
Annie and Patrick

Kyle and I

Unfortunately, I think my point-and-shoot camera is on its last legs.          

1 comment:

  1. Exciting! That chandelier alone is enough to make you want to be the Ambassador :) Does he actually live at Spaso House?