The Preparation (H) Phase

Preparing for this adventure would be presumed as new and exhilarating. Instead, it resembles an experience one would call for Preparation-H. I apologize, but it is essential you as readers can get a picture (sorry, again) of what this anxiety entails!

The web is a beautiful thing, but goodness, are there a lot of sites that point me in such different directions for the same document requirements. For a Foreign Visa application, you need numerous documentations, such as a doctors appointment, FBI background check, financial income proof (in this case, proof that I will have an income of $2,200/mo by either the job there or some other source… this requires my parents to type out a form lying and saying they’ve “got me covered.”). But don’t forget to have it notarized along with several other forms. If you show up at your Consulate appointment in Chicago without thirty-six photocopies of each of the 73958 forms required that you read on the hundreds of webpages out there showing you different requirements, you’re turned away immediately. One thing is collaborative amongst all the list out there; you need to prove you’re American and bring your passport. Easy enough, right?

That rant was just in regards to the VISA process. It is also quite complex when submitting and collecting all the necessary forms to become part of the Auxiliar program. I’ll discuss that in another section, at another time.

No I have no idea where I am going to live. I shall perform as I did when I hopped off the plane in Galicia, Spain the last time I came. Taxi cab to the city centre and find a hostel on foot. However, if you recall from my last blog, I took the “hard way” to a bit of an extreme. I took a 7-hr train ride across the country from Madrid to my small town I would be calling home. I arrived at the station very late at night with two large, bright purple suitcases, a backpack and a large purse all attached to me as I hobbled up and down the dark (extremely rocky and hilly) streets of Vigo for the first time. I found a hostel all right, and it only took me about an hour! As for communication, I look back now and realize I get lost constantly in Wisconsin, but never for more than a few minutes because we quickly turn to our handy, addictive iPhones. On the topic of cellular devices, I  won’t have one of those again for a few days after I get acclimated in the area, which makes things even more interesting. Flip phone here I come!

I haven’t written down all the copies and papers I need to finally arrive to the booking of a one-way plane ticket, but I know it’s rather intimidating. Countless documents and shoes, with limited suitcase space. Organizing your electronic files and virtual life, tying up loose ends in your city, being unable to resist shoe sales, rearranging your financials, and did I mention, shoes and not enough space for these shoes!? Of course, all of this among other elements must be worked out while a recent grad is trying to save up to pay for all of this and airfare. These are just a few of the things that are on my brain every moment of every day lately. Speaking of jobs, I was fortunate enough to find a second job in my hometown quickly so I hope to rack in a few more bucks before the plane takes off this Fall. The Retail and Restaurant industry will consume me for the next couple months. Oh the glitz and glamour.


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