8/02/2012

London here we come


An immigrant visa interview has been scheduled for the above mentioned applicant at the U.S. Embassy/Consulate in
LONDON on September 6, 2012 at 09:30 am.

At 7 o'clock this morning my alarm was screaming at me to roll out of bed and prepare for a fight with the Cross Trainer. As I frantically fiddled with the 'snooze' button, I robotically performed my morning ritual of reading through emails, tweets and Facebook messages from the night before. With groggy eyes I scrolled through my inbox until I  read the above paragraph and bounded out of bed Bambi style. The excitement was overwhelming and I frantically poked Carl to make sure he was coherent (poor boy was probably wondering if he was experiencing his first earth quake). I loudly explained that we'd been issued his Immigration Interview appointment and began to read aloud the entirety of the PDF (it's 6 pages). After I'd finished we rolled over to each other and smiled. FINALLY! After months and months of waiting we FINALLY had a date. On September 6th we'll be in London completing the very last stage of his immigration, and by mid September we'll be on plentiful rich Vermont soil. All at the same time I am bursting with excitement, nervous butterflies flutter in my stomach and a tingle of sadness pokes at my eyes. 

As we're currently situated in Liverpool (a whopping 5 hour drive Northwest of London) Carl and I immediately discussed how we'd need to stay overnight in London prior to the interview.  Even when travelling by high speed Virgin trains, it's still a 2.5 hour journey. And with the interview set for 9:30 am that wouldn't leave us much, if any, time to arrive in London, venture around the city on the Tube, and actually find the American Embassy. The OCD freak inside me HATES to be late (I'm one of those 'what if' dorks who purposely books flights with 5 hour layovers and arrives at train platforms just as the one before leaves so that I can guarantee I'll be there in time for mine) and I highly doubt the Embassy would giggle and wink if we walked in an hour late. So, as soon as I arrived home from the gym I plunked my 'bargain hunter' hat on my head and got to work searching for cheap train fares and hotel rooms. 

And boy did I find some deals!

One of Carl's work colleague's suggested a site which offers train tickets super cheap if purchased weeks in advance (thetrainline.com). Thankfully we've got donkeys years before our allocated appointment, so this wasn't a problem. I also spent a good hour scouring the web for as many cheap hotels as I could find (which weren't situated in London's ghetto) and formulated lists of rooms in accordance to their distance away from the Embassy and price (trust me people, the OCD gets FAR worse and more embarrassing than this). But finally, after far more time than I'd like admit, all of the pondering of train times/tube stations/Oyster Cards/hotel rooms and texts between the hubs which were something along the lines of:  'for crying out loud we'll have to sell kidneys to afford all of this immigration bullshit' I was able to book our train tickets AND our hotel room (what's that? You can hear our bank account's tummy grumbling? Oh yeah, don't worry. That's just implications of the American Government milking us for all we're worth. No biggie.) The truth is that this little excursion is still expensive (duh, this is London we're talking about) and far more than Carl and I wanted to spend JUST to get to the damn interview, but I was able to save us a pretty penny. I can confirm that the grand savings total came to (drum roll please)....£200! (you can bet your ass I cheered and danced around the house when that total savings figure was calculated). WOOHOO! At least I can sleep easy at night knowing that I saved us a couple hundred smackers which we can use to pay for extra baggage on our flight home. Boom-chicka-wow-wow!

And since we've paid an arm and a leg to get there and stay a night, I fully intend to soak up as much of London as I can. I'm making some damn lemonade with these lemons, and I'm gonna drink it as I eat a big fat Hummingbird Bakery cupcake. London is one of my favorite cities I've ever visited and I truly can't wait to say hello to Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and those adorable little squirrels that crawl up your leg at St James Park. 

London, here we come!

11 comments:

  1. Great news, Amanda! I remember when I had my visa interview. Such an exciting but nerve wracking time!
    Katie
    abritandheryank.blogspot.com

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    1. It is so exciting and nerve wracking! What kind of questions did they ask Katie? Did you and your hubs practice? xoxo

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  2. I laughed out loud at your donkey years comment-- you're funny! Congrats! :)

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    1. Haha! Thanks, Holly. You make me laugh with every one of your posts!

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