Thursday, February 18, 2010

Visas in Hand

On Saturday, we're headed back to Metz. After months of process, a lot of work by the GTL staff, and in-person appointments last Thursday at the French consulate in Houston, our visas arrived this morning. The doorbell rung by the Fedex driver was the most welcome sound I've heard in a long while. Susie and I both breathed big sighs of relief.

Our appointments Thursday morning were conducted through a large window, like that of bank teller, with a speaker system and a slot for passing documents. The person with whom we spoke was at first rather formal. But as we conversed in French and she learned a little about us and why we were going to France, the formality disappeared. We gave her our documents, filled out a fedex delivery form, paid some fees, and had our fingerprints taken electronically. And that was it--about 40 minutes in all. The consular staff ended up being very helpful.

The visas, glued into our passports, look highly official. With their printed photos, fancy reflective text and such, they resemble the main page of a US passport.

So, after a month of teaching remotely, I'll get to work with my students in person. And instead of describing El Paso hikes I'll start blogging again about France.

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