This blog is a record of my residence in that new and wholly independent Republic of Kazakhstan, of which we all know so well. In it, I intend to set forth such trifling and amusing instances which may crop up from time to time in my year working at a large university library. As such it will not contain that gravity to which readers of expatriate blogs are accustomed, and which is so proper to writing of that nature.
For months, the offer of work in that younger sibling of nations, Kazakhstan, had been bandied about on professional job-boards which librarians are known to frequent. It was a novelty in the way of employment tactics. To my experience, its like had not been tried before. The fascination it elicited was equaled only by the very opportunity it represented—the experience of a university library in the so-called “Western world,” and all one need to was move oneself twelve time zones into a future world.
It was to be a vacation on a grand scale. The participants would greet each day with the certain knowledge that they were enjoying the pleasures of living in an unknown and exciting land, they were getting to “take a royal holiday beyond the broad ocean in many a strange clime and many a land renowned in history. It was a brave conception; it was the offspring of a most ingenious brain. It was well advertised, but it hardly needed it: the bold originality, the extraordinary character, the seductive nature, and the vastness of the enterprise provoked commentary everywhere and advertised it in every household in the land.” How could I not but take the offer?