Friday, April 21, 2006

See, the thing is, the time is fast approaching and i've lost much motivation. just getting myself through work and dealing with all the remaining steps that will get me to the plane in less than two weeks is overwhelming my little little brain.

Passport troubles. It only took three days for my passport to get from NZIS London to beautiful NYC. Unfortunately, NZIS used my old address. The passport wasn't delivered and was, so they say, sent back. Three weeks later no one seems to know where the passport is. USPS says that it "would have been returned if it was undeliverable." unfortunately they are unable to say with certainty what happened to it, even though they know it was "undeliverable as addressed." The Royal Mail isn't any more helpful. All they've been able to tell me is that they handed it over to the USPS. Nothing about it coming back into their possession.

NZIS hasn't been particularly keen to help out either. Quoting me the same information I was able to get from the Royal Mail website multiple times.

Anyway, after finally finding all of this out (before i found it out my Visa Officer just kept making swipes at the USPS and saying it would probably show up sometime, well, unlikely since you sent it to the wrong address).

So, with 15 days before lift off i figured all of this out. With all common knowledge saying that getting a passport replaced was going to take at least two weeks paying expedited fees (making $157) i was a little nervous. Then there was the info that there were private companies you could pay that could get you the passport within a day or two, but that would cost an additional $150 or so. I wasn't too keen on the idea of having to pay $300 or more to replace my passport.

But that wasn't the least of the issue. if i were to get a new passport, of course it still wouldn't have my residency visa in it. and, as my substitute VO pointed out (regular on third vacation since december), i can't enter the country without a plane ticket out of the country if i don't have a work/residence visa. so, i was thinking i would have to pay $300+ to get my passport and then however much more for a ticket to Australia (woohoo vacation). All becuz NZIS used the wrong address.

Luckily while looking at the travel.state.gov website i saw that they had an expedited passport agency located in downtown nyc. you can only use the agency if you are within fourteen days of flying (or needing to submit for visa). That was when I was fifteen days away from flying, and i hadn't figured out the visa part yet.

So, i waited until yesterday (wednesday) and then called the appointment line to reserve a spot to visit the agency. i was (and still am) hoping not to have to utilize the appointment. i keep hoping that by some miracle the passport will arrive at NZIS in london and they will overnight it to me and i won't have to spend this money. Luckily though, oftentimes they will give you your passport same day at this agency ($157) and so that would give plenty of time for me to overnight the passport to london for them to re-visa it and overnight it back to me. Voila. I should still be able to leave on May 3rd as planned.

I still have a room full of possessions. I still have to pack some things. I have absolutely no motivation to work/plan/pack/stuff. But, in 13 days i will be flying away. And that is a very good thing.

jdr

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Hi, exactly one month until lift off. That's exciting. My passport was sent to me on March 20th and has not yet arrived, that makes me a little nervous. I've been practicing packing, that's fun and exciting, to realize that I have WAY too much stuff! Someone want to come over and take all of my possessions away? That would make me much more comfortable :-D

Happy Monday!

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Hi, I'm Jon, you may know me from my appearances in Brattleboro and Marlboro VT. Or you might know me from my time in New York City. We may have crossed paths in Northampton, MA or possibly during my brief stint in Berlin, Germany. More likely you don't know me at all, but if you're from Portland, OR or Wellington, New Zealand there's a chance we've bumped into each other. If any of these sound like places where you may know me from, drop me a line. :-)