I recently took a trip to Malaysia, A trip I never dreamed would have been possible. Getting out of the country of the United States was a lot harder than getting back in. First I had to prove who I was, well that was just a matter of getting my state issued ID. Because for me to get into another country I must provide a passport. In order for me to get my passport I must prove not only who I am, but also prove my citizenship,and provide my own passport pictures. Citizenship? I had to prove that I was a citizen of the United States. Now there were two ways I could do this. One I could give them a certified copy of my Birth Certificate, or two I can show them my Social Security Card. I had neither and lived in a different state from which I was born. I went and got my ID from the Department of Motor Vehicles, and it arrived in less than two weeks. I ordered my birth certificate, and it arrived within two days. I tried to get my Social Security card before my ID arrived and found out that I cannot get one without an ID. WOW, really?
Anyway, needless to say it took me about three tries to finally get my passport. First try was just to see what I needed to actually get one. My second trip, I thought, I had what I needed when I took a friend with me to verify my identity. You can prove your identity with someone you have known for two years wit a valid ID or drivers licence. That worked as far as my identity, but not for my citizenship. Thankfully my ID arrived a day after taking my friend to the passport office, So I wouldn’t have to ask her to go again. So back home I go to replan how to do this. I get home order my birth certificate, it arrives two days later, and I am set.
Armed with my passport pictures, my ID, and my birth certificate I enter the passport office. All goes well, but my plane leaves in 13 days and now they are telling me that it might take up to three week with expedited services plus overnight both ways. Just another nail biting wait for it to arrive. A week goes by and nothing, so I track the progress online. Finally it says it has been approved, Whew, now I have three days before my plane leaves, I have everything I need, bags are packed, ticket is purchased, room is booked, but no passport. Finally two days before I leave it arrives in the mail. Monday morning I leave to go get on the airplane for Malaysia.
Check out my next blog…Leaving for Malaysia.