Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Application Process

Things started happening faster than we had originally thought, even back right after the wedding. I was able the Tuesday after to get my name changed and get the legal documents I needed. I mailed off my passport renewal expedited service on the 19th of February, a full week or more sooner than I had thought I would be able to.

I was trying to follow it online, but it was saying that "expedited" service meant 2 weeks as opposed to 3, and I wasn't really impressed with that. However, I did get it back on the 28th (Saturday). I then went online and completed my visa application. I had gone through this process once to practice, so I knew I had everything I needed to fill in. I completed that, and made my biometrics appointment (digital photo and fingerprints) at an immigration office near Washington DC. The earliest one was March 3 (Tuesday) at 10am. That gave me three days to finish my notebook of documents (just the final touches needed to be done).

Tuesday the 3rd I drove to DC and on the way back with my stamped biometrics sheet, I stopped at FedEx and mailed it overnight to a passport and visa "expediting" company. I still don't know EXACTLY how it works, but reports on the internet were that people who had mailed in or even Fedexed in their documents directly to the embassy in LA (where I had to send mine) back in November and December were still waiting to hear their decision. So I was panicked. This company claimed to be able to get an answer the same day. So I sent my package overnight to them, they were going to get it on Wed, hand deliver it to the embassy on Thursday, and have an answer for me Thursday afternoon, and FedEx it back to me to have in my hand on Friday. When we learned that this was an option, I jumped at it. Nid had surgery scheduled on his elbow for Tuesday the 10th, and we had just assumed I would miss it, but with the opportunity to be there now present, I really wanted to do it. So all day Thursday I was a nervous wreck. I had to take into consideration I was 3 hours ahead of CA time, which didn't help. At 4:15 PST I called and they said that the courier had picked up at 4 and they should have my papers on their desk within the hour and they would call. At 5:30 PST they called and said the consulate told them to "try back tomorrow." What did that mean? They didn't know. So I had to wait. It was a really long night, too.


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