Above is not a picture of the Irish flag. This is the flag of Cote D'Ivoire - where I will be stationed for my inaugural post in the Foreign Service. At the Flag Day for the 100 Specialist Class at the George P. Schultz Center in Northern Virginia this flag caused much confusion. When it was held up everyone in the class was shouting "Ireland!" Then my name was called. Many classmates have told me they wish they had a photo of my face. Not only was Ireland not in my top three of posts where I would like to be assigned, it wasn't even an option. I was thinking, "Well I'll go, but gosh, you could have given me some advanced warning."
Even after the confusion was cleared up, several people in the class still thought that I was going to Ireland, or that I had been mistakenly given the wrong flag.
The difference is this: Ireland goes: green, white, orange. Cote D'Ivoire goes: orange, white, green.
Here is the display of 55 flags for the 55 members of the 100 Specialist Class. The water bottle was not handed out, and will continue to serve in the United States.
And below is a Stanley Crane which lent its name to my last posting. The Stanley Crane is from southern Africa and I liked the weird shape of it's head. I'm guessing it was "discovered" by the Stanley who found Dr. Livingston. I'm also guessing that none of the African natives ever called it a Stanley Crane.