As a diplomat, you spend your life living in other countries and learning new cultures and languages. It’s one of the reasons I decided to become a diplomat. This year, I’m serving as a Transatlantic Diplomatic Fellow at the Department of State. The Transatlantic Diplomatic Fellowship allows mid-level diplomats from EU member states and NATO allies to spend a year working at the State Department, and American diplomats to serve at foreign ministries of participating countries and institutions. While I’ve been living in D.C., I’ve had a chance to learn more about U.S. culture and American life, and have found the experience enriching. I encourage Americans who have an opportunity to experience another country to do so, and if you are in the D.C. area, you can start this weekend!
On May 2, 2015, the embassies and consulates of more than 40 countries will open their doors to thousands of visitors in Washington D.C. and allow these visitors to experience the food and culture of their respective countries -- for free! Beginning at 10:00 a.m., you can embark on the “Around the World Embassy Tour” and travel vicariously to destinations in Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Middle East, and the Americas.
The event is a part of Passport DC 2015, a month-long tour featuring several exciting events highlighting the international diplomatic community of the Nation’s Capital and its varied international culture.
Next week, on May 9, 2015, the journey will continue, as the European Union (EU) Delegation and the embassies of the EU member states allow visitors to experience the authentic music, dance, food, film, and art of 28 nations – including my home country, the Czech Republic!
So, if you are in the D.C. area, I hope you take this chance to “visit” other countries and explore other cultures. This weekend, you can taste traditional Indonesian cuisine, see a traditional Pakistani dance, listen to Ecuadorian music, and discover more right here in the Nation’s Capital! For more information and updates, follow #PassportDC on Twitter.
About the Author: Lenka Schropferova is a diplomat from the Czech Republic participating in the Transatlantic Diplomatic Fellowship in the State Department’s Bureau of Public Affairs.
Editor’s Note: The U.S. Department of State is a signature partner of the “Passport DC 2015” event.
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