Somewhere in Siberia is a pregnant polar bear named Raisa, her every move tracked by satellite as part of a study of polar bear migration. She is named for a former Interior Department worker, a Russian-speaking, 28-year-old blond who was involved in the project. Her name: Raisa Scriabine.
Somewhere in Ireland it's raining, and the potatoes are not being harvested as they were this time last year by a 30-year-old Japanese-speaking woman who left Washington to be near a boyfriend. Her name: Mariko Fakunda.
Last month Scriabine and Fakunda decided to marry those diverse backgrounds to begin Forum International in Washington. With funds from their families and several silent investors, the duo hopes to offer public relations services for foreign countries and help arrange cultural and journalism exchanges.
"For both of us English is a second language," says Fakunda, who worked for several years as a researcher for Washington television stations and, eventually, for the President Ford campaign.
"The big market in 1980 will be the Soviet Union," notes Scriabine, who hopes contacts she made during years working on wildlife projects with the Soviets will pay off in the private sector.
Two years ago, Scriabine posed for a "Girls of Washington" pictorial in Playboy, an unusual move for a woman whose interest runs more toward transplanting Siberian steppe ferret and endangered Siberian crane eggs to the United States. Today, lunching with the ambassador of Upper Volta is a more likely pastime as both women bet their careers that detente will not go down the drain.