Wednesday, October 19, 2011

205 days and then relax....,

Well it's the 1pm on the 19th of October 2011, and I'm sat in a pub in Soho London, relaxing after one of the most stressful days so far in the whole immigration process.

It all started yesterday, with a train journey from Leeds to London, Kings Cross. Arriving in London at 8pm, I proceeded to my hostel for a nights sleep - not that I got any!

I "awoke" at 5:30am, showered and left the hostel at 6am. The first order of business was, 1) passport photos to American spec (different to uk)
2) find somewhere to store my bag & phone. The embassy won't let you take anything electrical in, including key fobs.

Goulds Pharmacy (100 yards from embassy) do both, so I turned up at 6:45am to find that it doesn't open until 7:30am (my appointment was at 9am). There was a really nice italian coffee shop next door, so I sat down, had a coffee and a bacon sandwich.

7:20am the pharmacy opens, take photos (worst ever picture!!!) and drop off my suitcase and phone.

7:30am queue up at embassy, show letter, and go through security. In embassy by 7:45am. On entry get given a sticker with I-906 on it.

8:00am the embassy comes to life. Numbers start being called out (mainly N numbers - non-immigrant)

9am My number flashes up on screen - here we go!

So I stand in front of this window, and slide my passport & letter under the window. The women on the other side then disappears. A minute or so later she reappears with a bright pink file and then starts looking through it.

Finally I get asked my name and the name of my fiancé - she then asks me to put my left hand on a scanner to take my fingerprints, then the same for my right and then both thumbs.

I then proceed to give her the following documents (& copies): police cert, birth cert, divorce decree & affidavit of support.

She looks through them checks them off a list and then hands me a pink slip, telling me to fill it in once I leave to sit back down. She asks a couple of questions then tells me that I can go sit back down and wait for my next call up.

9:20am my number flashes up again - this is now the main event!

I go to window 15 and am greeted my a smiling American lady. She asks me to put my left hand on a fingerprint scanner and once that goes ok, I have to raise my right hand and say "I do", after see recites an oath in which I promise to tell the whole truth.

She then proceeds to ask me the following questions:

Where did me meet?
When was that?
When did we meet in person?
Has Linsey been to the UK?
When was that?
Were her parents going to the wedding?
Did either of us have children?
Was that my niece in the photos?

She then smiled and said "I'm going to approve your visa"

I think I just stood there looking blank!
She then said, "take your pink slip up to the courier counter and you should get your visa in around 5 days" and that was it! It took all of 5mins! What were we stressing about?

I then paid my courier fee, went back to the pharmacy to collect my things, then phoned Linsey at 9:44am to tell her the news!

All I had to then was find something to do in London until 7:30pm and relax.

See you all in MN in a few weeks!!!


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