Sunday, August 09, 2015

Time for a little R&R

One of the most popular perks of being in the U.S. Foreign Service is a benefit called Rest and Recuperation (R&R) travel. While the R&R benefit varies from post to post, it's best described as a government-provided plane ticket for the whole family to get away every so often. If you want the formal definition:
3 FAH-1 H-3721.2: “Conditions of life at the post present distinct and significant difficulties of sufficient severity to justify temporary relief for an employee and employee’s eligible family members during a period of assignment.”
Of course, since the government is providing the air fare, it comes with a lot of restrictions and regulations, which can be found in 14 FAM 530 and 3 FAM 3720. Also, not every post gets as many R&Rs per assignment, but for a two year stint in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, we are authorized two R&Rs during our tour. This summer was our first one, and we aimed to make the most of it.

Like most expat families in Saudi Arabia, once the schools are out there is very little reason for anyone without a job to stick around. Especially when there is an overlap with Ramadan like there was this year. So, Kacey took the girls back to the States when school let out and I stayed in country for a month longer, participating in my first Iftar and Eid celebrations before catching a flight back as well.

Here's where we went on R&R:
Life's a Beach
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