Saturday, April 17, 2010

Where's My Philippine Passport?!

Okay, so, the other day, I thought of calling the Philippine Consulate in Washington D.C. to inquire what has been happening since it's already 7 weeks after I renewed my passport. I dialled the number posted on their website, and after pressing the number designated for passport, I heard a 10-15 minute recorded message of a lady reading the requirements of applying for a passport and it's like taking forever for her to finish all reading those. After which I was rerouted to a voice that says Mr./Miss "somebody" will now answer your call...and at the end part..."IS NOT AVAILABLE" at the moment. Please leave your message after the tone...Beeep!!! Well, I tried 3 times, and I got earaches listening to those recorded messages to no avail.

I tried dialling the customer service by pressing the 0, and Ola! a lady finally said hello?... So, I asked her how long further should I wait for my renewed passport because I was already waiting for 7 weeks. She said there has been a delay in the processing and most January applicants haven't even been turned in yet. I applied in February 2010. So, I asked her again how long will I still wait? She replied, "wait a little bit more"....My goodness gracious! Nobody could even check it if the actual passport has already arrived.

I emailed them and told them my concerns...until now, no response yet. Sounds familiar? NAH! This is just the first few steps on how to handle the Philippine immigration service. Only in the Philippines!

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Friday, April 16, 2010

What A Good Week!

This week has been pretty much kind to! Last Tuesday, I received back the original copy of my Naturalization Certificate from the Department of State in a separate envelope from the mail. This document was needed when I applied for my US passport, so the lady at the post office where I applied said the original copy has to be sent in to the Passport Center for checking. I was a little bit concern about how safe the mail would be for my certificate, because in case that will get lost, I will have to pay $500 in requesting a new one plus a wait for another year! Well, it got through safely back to me...thank God!

The next day (Wednesday), I received my US passport from the mail, oh, la la!!! I ordered expedite service and the fastest one was 2 weeks :).

On the other hand, I am still waiting for my Philippine passport that I renewed last February. They told me it would take 4-6 weeks, it's been more than 6 weeks! Oh, my gulay!!!! Only in the Philippines! Now, I am done with USCIS. It's time to tackle the Philippine immigration, much tougher this time. :(

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Spring Has Come!

Thank more snow, no more freezing cold, and the trees are starting to show their colorful beauties. Yesterday, it was in the mid-70's and sunny! Of course, I was loving it and it was almost like an early summer, lol! Hubby started to sweat like crazy although it's still in the 70's. Both of us are not happy during winter, I happened to love summer, and he loves the spring and the fall. I like spring and fall because of their colorful effects, but there is probably that "it" factor that summer has, the reason why I still love it no matter hubby would say it's because I am a tropical person and I grew up all my life in a warm climate! That's true!

Anyway, I am happy on the temperature getting warmer, lol! This week would be in the mid-70's. We dressed up our swing at our back porch and it's an ideal place for me to sit or lie down there to catch the breeze and colorful trees surrounding our home.

Happy Easter everyone!

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Getting My US Passport (Part 2)

So, yesterday (April 2), I went to the local post office for my appointment for my US passport application. Everything has been done quite smoothly, without any hassles. It was a good thing, hubby came with me because he acted as a witness for me.

We went inside the office and we were taken into a small cubicle. There, the lady asked me if my photos have been taken, I had couple photos in my hand, but I don't like the way I look, so I told her I want to get another more recent photos, so she did :). Just after a minute and she's done with the photos, all cut and ready!

I gave her my application form which I already filled up online and printed it, and my Certificate of Naturalization. She asked me my driver's license, but I told her I only got an LP, and it wasn't acceptable, agh!!! She asked me for any other ID like a state ID, but I don't have one. So, fortunately, I got a very good husband!, LOL! He signed an affidavit as a witness, and a little bit of informal swearing, and after reading the swore in statement, he signed the affidavit, and presented his US passport. It was another good idea that I brought his passport as well. The lady photocopied the bio data page of his passport, returned back his passport and my Learner's permit (which was useless), but she retained the original copy of my certificate of Naturalization. She said the original copy of my certificate will be sent together with my application and will be returned back to me together with the passport.

After everything was done, we went to the cashier and I requested for an expedite service. She gave me a tracking number, then summed all the expenses. I asked her how long is the wait for an expedite service and she said it might take a week or a little more than that.

That ends the business transaction for that day! Whew! Hopefully, I can receive my US passport within a week...keeping my fingers crossed.