Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Road Trip
We dragged our bodies out of bed at the crack of dawn on Monday morning and we hit the road to the American Embassy at 6 A.M.

It was foggy, cold and damp. It was hard to even see the road in front of us and my eyelids kept closing in exhaustion. I had only slept 3 hours.





Four and a half hours later we reached our destination.

The American Consulate is like a fortress. There are American flags everywhere and it's surrounded by tall electric gates. There is military everywhere and the minute you approach there is a uniformed man in front of you pushing against your chest with the palm of his hand.

"I need to see identification"

Once he saw my American Passport, his features relaxed and he smiled "Welcome"

After going through questioning, a metal detector and having all our bags searched, we were given a number. There is a large room with about 200 chairs. The place was filled with people. there was a portrait of a smiling George W. Bush next to all the panoramic views of U.S. Locations. (Washington D.C., New York City and the Grand Canyon)

After a long wait our number was called. We approached an old man slumped over and shifting through papers behind a sheet of glass.

I explained our situation. "We came here 4 months ago, we were given some forms. We sent them in and we've been waiting. Can you tell us the status on our application and what the hold up is?"

He took our name and disappeared from view. He was gone for what felt like eternity. I glanced nervously at Eric and he took my hand.

Then the man returned. He slooooowly eased himself back into his chair. He cleared his throat and then leaned shakily towards the microphone. He glanced at Eric. "Your application was approved 2 months ago."

I just stared at him incrediously. My jaw dropped and for a moment I was speechless. "2 months ago??!", I repeated in shock. "But..we weren't notified!"

"You should have received a package with forms and information concerning stage two"

"Well, we didn't", I said "We called here at least once a week, we left messages on the machine.. why didn't anyone call us back to let us know?"

"That's not how we operate...", he said matter-of-factly with a tired expression. He shifted his weight on the chair and stared at us blankly.

"But we've been waiting!! The lease ended on our flat and we had to move into our boss's basement! We have hardly any money left and we're stranded here in Germany!"

"I'm going to just transfer you to someone downstairs so you can take care of all of this, okay?"

"ok..."

So we ended up in front of a new woman behind a new pane of glass. "Okay, here is a bunch of new forms.", she slid them under the glass "I need you to fill all of them out and fax them to this address. We also need an additional 359 dollars. Once we receive that. We'll schedule a date for the interview and health exam."

"How long with this take?" I explained the urgency of the situation. I told her about my father serving in Iraq and my Mother's health issues.

"Okay, I see that this is pressing. I'm going to have this expedited and put on the top of the pile. You will receive a call in for the interview before May 13th. Everything should run smoothly and you'll be back in America in no time."

That's a relief. If we hadn't made that trip on Monday, we'd be still in the dark. Now we just have to come up with the extra money...

But at least I know I'll be going home on May 13th. Things are finally moving... Okay, So it wasn't the "Ideal scenario" but it wasn't "the dreaded scenario" either.

It's funny when I think back to how naive and clueless I had been about this process 6 months ago. "Oh it should be a piece of cake. I'm an American, Eric is married to me. He'll just fill out a few papers and they'll just hand him a Green Card. Just like that" (yeah...right)





The ride home was relaxing and the sun finally emerged from behind the clouds.

In only a few weeks I'll be back in the States with my family!

****

One last thing, Special thanks to everyone that shared links to articles that shed a little light on the story behind the construction worker photograph I posted in my previous entry. Apparently I'm not the only person that is curious about this. I noticed there was a bizarre increase of visitors to my photoblog. When I looked into it I discovered that over the past few days, there have been tons of google search hits from people on the internet searching for the exact same information. Crazy!


 
posted by Clarity25 at 12:46 PM |


16 Comments:


At April 26, 2006, Anonymous poopiebitch 

What a relief! It sucks that they didn't let you know sooner, and that you have to shell out yet more money, but at least you know now! Good luck!

At April 26, 2006, Anonymous niki 

Hey girl. That is INSANE!!! I cant believe you had made it to the next step and no idea. MESSED UP! But at least you are on your way. THAT ROCKS!!! I am soo happy for you guys. What a relief for the two of you. Limbo land no more...right?!:) Awesome pix as usual!

At April 26, 2006, Anonymous Jenn 

Two bloody months? I would be so PISSED if I were you. I mean, yeah. I know you're happy but it's really crap that they didn't mail you the things you needed sooner. It's a good thing you talked Eric into going there to try and sort things out. Otherwise, who knows how long it could have been before you heard anything! Also, I love the Eric's so loyal to the people in his life. (Which I think you mentioned in your private diary and I just forget to comment there! But maybe it was this entry. Eep.) You have a very good man. ♥

At April 26, 2006, Anonymous Kiosh 

Hurrah! I'm so glad things are flowing! I send you both big purple glitter star hugs and much love! =0)

At April 27, 2006, Blogger Holden 

Yay! All the best!

=)

At April 27, 2006, Blogger christina 

Oh man, that's totally nuts. I'm not understanding why they didn't know that the supposed package with the documents didn't get to you. They usually send stuff like that registered mail.

But it's GREAT that you finally know for sure!

At April 27, 2006, Blogger Ms. Live and Let Live 

I'm really glad that you two have finally got some sort of FORWARD movement in all of this. Frustrating, I'm sure, but at least something is happening. Yay!

At April 27, 2006, Anonymous alice 

Hooray! I'll remain with my toes crossed until its all signed sealed and delivered!
There's a reason everyone in the government works behind glass! I imagine there would be a high turnover rate from people being strangled!

At April 27, 2006, Anonymous niki 

HEHE!!! No...I dont have your DLand hook up yet!!!!:):) Leave it in my notes...and if you want my photoblog hook up...its finally working!!! I have to invite you by email...so if you are interested...I need your address.:}

At April 27, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous 

Yes I second what Alice said. they are behind glass so you don't kill them when they pull a stunt like they just did on you two. How frustrating! I would have screamed! At least you have a date now and things are moving forward! ((hugs))

At April 27, 2006, Anonymous niki 

I am such a dork...still getting educated in the world of computers and online junk...so my link to my photo blog is www.flickr.com/photos/fromnicolaseye

Enjoy...:}

At April 27, 2006, Anonymous Kristina 

So, so glad that this is all finally getting settled for you guys! I know you can't wait to be home! *hugs*

At April 27, 2006, Blogger Stacia 

How terrible that you didn't get that package but at least you found out now instead of waiting a couple more months. I'm glad the ball is rolling again and that you'll be home soon.

At April 27, 2006, Blogger Crystal 

Hey Clarity! Not sure if you've seen them or not, but the pics from my vacation are in my photoblog.

At April 28, 2006, Anonymous Amy 

Wow, I'm glad you guys went and checked on the status of the application. If only they had actually INFORMED you! Sheesh...but maybe there's a reason for all this? I hope it goes smoothly from here on out. Lovely pictures.

At May 03, 2006, Blogger James 

Just be THANKFUL you even have that option. I CANNOT bring my partner back to the US because the US doesn't recognize gay partnerships! Think how you would feel if you couldnt even brink him back with you............now that's how I feel......



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