Thursday, October 27, 2011

The mail brings amazing things.

Travel is one of my passions -- after loving Jesus and food.
That's why I was thrilled this evening when I opened my mailbox and saw a packet that I instinctively knew contained my brand new U.S. passport.

It arrived 12 days after I applied for it, well ahead of the expected mid-November date. Yay for the travel off-season, our good friends at the U.S. Department of State and quick delivery by the U.S. Postal Service.

For years, I traveled on a Nigerian passport to Kenya, Poland and other countries in between. As a U.S. permanent resident, I had no trouble leaving or entering America. I also had no problems getting into most places. The issue sometimes came if it was a country that didn't have friendly relations with Nigeria. Boy, did they like to give Nigerians a hard time.

As a result, when I took overseas trips, I dressed in such a way that I could pass for a teenager in hopes that I would be left in peace as I came through that country's passport control.

A perk of becoming a naturalized American is getting the U.S. passport. Native-born Americans may not understand the gravity of this. Until now, I had to apply for expensive visas and fill out **ridiculous** amounts of paperwork (which I did gladly). I also had to get friends in those countries to vouch for me that I was not a terrorist, crazy, etc.

An American passport is like gold. You can literally walk into just about anywhere on the globe. No hassles.

I can't wait to use my passport on my next overseas trip. Who knows? I may just do a happy dance through that country's passport control.

World, here I come!

4 comments:

  1. That is awesome!!!! I don't know first hand about the issues you explained - I have however, had people in other countries say to me, "wow. You are so lucky to have a US Passport...." Completely amazing!

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  2. I'm so happy for you! I appreciate the reminder of what it was like to travel on a non-US passport. I do appreciate how easy the other countries make it. In all honesty I think the worst part of traveling is on an American airline back home! Security can be out of control (I had a bad experience both times I tried it, actually).

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  3. Most countries like the U.S., as long as you're not going to IRAN (:
    Your sister,
    Missy (:

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  4. Makes me not take for granted the freedoms I enjoy...and also makes me want to hop a plane or boat or train! Happy trails, Lola!

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