I have been spending a lot of time with the intern at work. She is a raven-haired statuesque twenty-something of Russian/Turkmen descent. We discovered over a dinner of sushi and cocktails the other night, that her father is from Vladikavkaz, in the Caucuses, the last place I taught when I was in Russia, and her mum is from Turkmenistan, where I have also taught. This bizarre coincidence has cemented our friendship I think – she says she never meets anyone who’s even heard of Vladikavkaz, never mind been there!

She is a bit of a rover herself – has visited many countries and lived in different parts of the states. She’s also trying really hard to find work as a journalist – she’s already working with us, but not for payment. I have a bad feeling that there is going to be a generation of journalists used as slave labour by greedy media outlets. She was telling us she met up with a reporter from one of the major networks for lunch and he was telling her that young journalists have to make their own luck. Hmm.

Speaking of journalists, tomorrow I am interviewing the actor Ed Norton – on bio-diversity. Should be interesting….!

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