Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Adios, old passport.

Last night, I was brushing my teeth getting ready for bed when P.I.C. asks me, "What do you have going at work tomorrow?"

"Not much. Just have some projects to plug away on. Why?"

"Perhaps tomorrow would be a good day to renew your passport."

....Yeah. He's right. While we have no plane tickets (YET), we are nearly two months away from our overdue honeymoon. So today, I gathered all of my necessary documentation and arranged to make the necessary trip to the various places to renew my passport. It did make me think though, of how sad I was to get rid of my existing book. What adventures I had in that one...

(At this moment, I imagine the waves and music of a flashback montage are occurring. It might help if you imagine that as well.)

The year was 2003. I had recently found out that my scholarship was going to enable me to study abroad for the summer. My old passport had expired, and I had to get my ducks in a row for nine weeks in Europe. I had carefully plotted my outfit the day of my passport photo. Turtleneck. V-neck sweater. Hair straight, and parted down the middle. The photo? Black and white, of course. I wanted an old-school look. My passport was issued relatively promptly, and I was set to see the world. Well, I was set to see the Western part of Europe, that is.

Rome, Italy. May 26, 2003. The stamp was barely legible, yet I knew exactly where to find it in my book. Crooked, but there. The very first stamp in my new passport. I even traced over the number "6" so that I was certain of the day I arrived in at the Leonardo da Vinci Airport (or Fiumicino). Sadly (to us), the European Union meant that you were likely to not get your passport stamped on the train. So I went from Italy to Switzerland, then onto France, Germany, Belgium, and Luxembourg with no additional stamps. My next stamp was London. We arrived via the Chunnel. I went through immigration as the officer grilled me on my intentions in the United Kingdom. Then, finally, home. Sweet home Chicago.

Two years later, I ventured to the Caribbean. Twice. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Not only did they plainly stamp it upon your arrival, they also stamped it when you left. Twice as nice! Finally, over five years after that trip, P.I.C. and I trekked to Panama. Sadly, that was to be my last stamp in that book.

You see, I got married (DUH). I changed my name. In so doing, my hand is forced in losing all of those stamps I acquired over the last eight years.

It's OK. While it is a collection of my past travels and adventures, I am fortunate in knowing that I will have many more travels in my future. Well, I sure hope I do!

Today I mailed off that little book, along with a new photo (they want color now), a check, and my application, with my fingers crossed that I get my new book in the next two months.

What's in two months, you wonder? SPAIN, also known as the honeymoon.

1 comment:

  1. Don't they return the old with the new? I have an old one returned with a past renewal, but then I've never had a name change. Except for that one pesky witness protection thing but that hardly counts.