Well, it's official! We have been re-assigned to Skopje for an additional two years and we are quite thrilled with our decision. Originally, we had not planned on attempting to stay due to our dissatisfaction with the high school our son attended last year. This year however, he is doing so well in the new high school, that we would like to keep him there until graduation.
Our bidding went very well, and our original strategy was successful. We had concentrated on posts with language training in an effort to return to the US for a year, allowing us to complete Collier's surgery prior to our next posting. We felt this was the best approach even though it meant 4 high schools in 4 years for Christopher. And it worked, we were offered positions in Baku, Azerbaijan, and Tunis, Tunisia, which would have been perfect. But the European Bureau representative threw a twist in by asking us if we wanted to stay in Skopje or move on, which got us thinking and took away some of our excitement about the new opportunities. We really do love everything about our life here in Skopje, so now that the school problem was resolved, it seemed silly to leave! So although we had already received a handshake offer on Baku, my husband informed the Management Officer and the DCM here that he would be interested in staying, only if they approved, and within a couple hours we had a handshake on Skopje! The Embassy was stunned that it all happened so quickly, and we took that as a sign that it was meant to be. So, we will remain in Macedonia and have to postpone Collier's surgery for a while longer, but we are completely happy with our "new" assignment!