Before I sat for UPSC CSE, I had a dream and when I had cleared it, I had achieved that dream. But I soon learnt that clearing the UPSC and getting your dream job is not an end in itself.
I had thought that the foundation course in LBSNAA, Mussoorie would be a cake-walk. It was not. We would get up early in the morning for our physical training and then attend a series of lectures every day from Economics to Law. After LBSNAA, the training at the Foreign Service Institute was equally gruelling. Thereafter, a six-month attachment at the Ministry, followed by foreign language training abroad. The complete training took about three years.
I had hoped to have some respite when I started full time work at the Embassy. But I was again mistaken. You had to be always on your toe. And this has continued posting after posting. I learnt soon enough that when one represents one’s country abroad, no issue can be taken lightly. Over the years, my service has taught me to be more responsive, sensitive to others’ problems, pay attention to details and never take anything for granted. And because we stay at a place for about two to four years, one has learnt to adjust.
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