Friday, January 19, 2007

Saga of a Passport

Lorna asked me to tell all about the experiecnce of obtaining a Canadian Passport the week before the USA implements its "if you fly into or over American land you must have a valid passport" rules.
I missed the part about flying OVER US airspace until I was coming home this afternoon. Good thing as it would have made me really concerned - as it was I thought "oh well if I get it I get it, if I don't no biggie, we are only going to the Dominican and you do not need a passport for that."

So, last week I filled out Mike's passport on line. This in itself was a feat as the site only supports certain versions of certain browsers. One of our computers worked for this purpose- thank goodnes! There used to be no lilneup if you filled the forms out online, but the stupid newspaper published that little known fact and now the lineups are the same as if you didn't have the foresight.
Mike finally got his pictures taken and forms signed by our pharmas... pharmisi..shoot - drug doctor- you know wht I mean!
I decided to devote today- friday- to the passport cause. I have heard about the horrendous lineups, my sister waited 6 hours, a friend 8 hours- yuck! I brought a book and a good attitude! Really it was my own fault - weeelll Mikes own fault! We could have done this months ago, but of course waited til the last minute.
I put 3$ in the meter, and walked across the parking lot. A guy came over and informed me that he had been waiting 3 hours and just kept leaving and checking back. They give you a number at the door - you probably know the drill from the other places - there is a digital sign that tells what number is up.
But SWEET- you don't actually have to sit and wait if you don't want to?!
When I got to the door, i was given a number. This was at 11:00am. The security guard told me that I might not be seen today. My number was 983- I forgot to see what number they were at.
So I took my number and left. Went to Fabricland - where else! and bought a few odds and ends I needed- only odds and ends as Lauren still had my card from when she picked up some lace for me last week- shoot!
I stopped in at Sears Outlet and picked up a couple of summer skirts and shorts- no time to sew any before I leave! Then the Dollar Store looking for things for table centrepieces for the play. Next stop was Michaels. 90 metres of tulle later and 100$ poorer, i was ready for food. I hit the drive through at HArveys and then decided to head back. I was going to park at the High School, but those dumb busses were blocking the driveway. I found a convenient meter - with 2 hours of time left on it! As it was now 2:30 and the passport office closed at 4:30, I figured that would be about right!
When I walked in to the office I took a glance at the board - to my surprise they were at 982!! I was next in line! The security guard looked at my number and exclaimed - "hey you should be here" To which I replied happily "well, here I am!"
5 minutes later and some friendly conversation with the clerk/teller/guy behind the counter, and I was OUT! The passport will be ready to be picked up on FEB 2!

Total time spent involved with the passport today - 3 1/2 hours. Total time spent actually in the passport office - less than 10 minutes!!

Should I buy a lottery ticket today?

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