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Thursday, May 21, 2009

Why oh why???

Must we have so much stress?

Until 24 hours ago, we had been pretty relaxed about all of our travel plans. Really...we've been ready for the travel call since last May when it should have come.

Last night around 7pm I checked the FedEx tracking number for our passports expecting to find them on their way back from San Francisco. Vietnam doesn't do Visa on entry. You have to send your passports to the Embassy or a Consulate prior to departing to have your Visa stamped in your passport. So, after receiving the travel call on Monday, we sent ours off and dutifully checked to ensure that they were received on Tuesday. You can't do this in advance because the Visa is only valid for a month and since we have to be there for 3 weeks, there isn't much room to estimate what date you might travel on. We paid to have them expedited - turned around in 24 hours - so really they could have been mailed back to us Tuesday but definitely by Wednesday.

Back to 7pm last night...the tracking number had not been activated. They had not been sent. I tried to convince myself that I should just relax - there was nothing that I could do until this morning. The reality is that I didn't fall asleep until after midnight and woke up at 4am worried about it. Feel back asleep until 6am. Shortly after getting up, I checked the FedEx tracking system again just to see if maybe it had been logged over night. No break for us.

At 9:30 this morning, I was finally able to call the Consulate. I politely asked if I could inquire about the status of our passports and the pleasant man said please hold on for a few minutes. He came back 4 or 5 minutes later and said that our passport numbers were logged in the system but he couldn't find them. He said they were really busy and could I call back this afternoon?

*insert lots of words that aren't very nice*

So, I found that the Consulate takes a nice long lunch - from 12:00-2:30. That's 3:30 my time. I don't think there is more that one flight to San Francisco after 3:30 so I was a little worried (yeah right...little doesn't begin to describe it - let's call it freaked out!). Believe me, I'd have been on a plane in an instant if necessary.

At 3:30 I called back. (Okay, I might have also called at 1:30 and 2:30 just to see if they really took that long of a lunch.) He said he'd found our passports and that he would put them in the mail today.

Now really...how many times in this process have we heard a promise about a particular action by a particular date? I was most appreciative to him, but knew that until I saw the tracking information, I wouldn't be relaxed.

"Date/TimeActivityLocationDetailsMay 21, 2009 5:19 PMPicked upSAN FRANCISCO, CA"

The adreneline is still flowing through my veins but I may be able to sleep again...

Wendi

3 comments:

Hank said...

Wow!!! Praying that everything else goes smooth!!! God's Speed!!

Valorie Leonard said...

Phew! So glad that you are on top of this! All your stress will be relieved in just a few short days!

Duda Family said...

Ok - so its Friday now - did they come?!!!! This must mean everything will go like clock work for you in VN! :)