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Going to work for a former client

I'm currently a 2nd year associate at a Big 4. A month ago I rolled off of a client in which I really enjoyed. I've been at over 10 different clients since starting (been on a lot of smaller private jobs), and this company is the only one I can truly see myself working at and feel passionately about. One day while I was there I had to go into his office to ask some questions, and we ended up having a general discussion about the company. He mentioned that they would be expanding to offices in other countries, and would probably be needing an international accountant, which he joked about me taking. I just laughed it off as I didn't want to compromise my independence. Also, the last day I was there, he said I should come by the office when the audit is over to grab some lunch.

I've been burnt out and really depressed with public accounting and have been looking for other opportunities. I was thinking of e-mailing the controller to ask about opportunities there, specifically the international accounting role. I also saw a post on their website about a financial analyst role that I was intersted in. So a few questions:

1.) Would it be inappropriate to send him an e-mail asking him about opportunities at the company, specficially stating my interest in the int'l accounting role?

2.) I haven't been able to find any guidance for my firm regarding indepedence issues with this. I've only been able to find something about public SEC registrants where there may be a cooling off period. Are rules different for private vs. public?

3.) Any other ways I should proceed with this, or just give up on this?