Monday, October 14, 2013

I like to be in America!

You guys... last week was gooood.

I have been organizing a work trip to the U.S. for the last two months and things are finally, finally, FINALLY coming together.... less than a week before I head back to American soil. That's the nature of this job - always last minute. For anyone who really knows me, I... thrive under pressure, but I also love to plan down to the minute detail (is that ironic?). The past few weeks have been torturous with so many moving pieces jeopardizing the conference, and with so many factors completely out of my control (*cough*U.S. consulate*cough*). But I can finally BREATHE A SIGH OF RELIEF.

It's happening. Knock on wood. Insh'allah.

The besttttttttt part is that I am extending my trip two weeks for an epic East Coast Reunion Adventure. Well, actually the best part is......

C. IS COMING WITH ME!!!!!

This will be his first trip on my stomping ground after two and a half years together. He'll be meeting my dad, my brothers, my puppies, and the majority of my friends for the first time EVER!!! The plan is to work our way up from Washington--cannot wait to stroll through Georgetown and past the White House together!--to NYC for some quintessential American sightseeing (/shopping/eating), and up to Boston/New England for all that autumn has to offer (cider. apples. pumpkins. seasons. LEAVES CHANGING COLOR)... and some much needed family and friend time.

The Georgetown tour will definitely be a highlight....

Blooming trees on Georgetown's Copley Lawn


Images via here and here

To say I'm excited is a bit of an understatement ;)

And I haven't been home since January. I've touched on my nostalgia quite a bit these past several months. I finally get to indulge in the things I miss most... the tangible things, yes, but mostly just being a part of everything. And I get to share it with C. I'm so grateful.

Let the list making begin! But first, a list of lists I need to make :)

  • All the shizz I need to buy, primarily a BRAND NEW WARDROBE (I haven't really shopped for myself in nearly two years!). Also, bulk-sized parmesan.
  • Our detailed daily itinerary. Sights in D.C., NYC, and Boston -- from the White House to my high school.
  • Quintessential American experiences in which C. must partake, eg. Halloween. Apple picking. PICNICS.
  • Must-try restaurants and food: real sushi, real steak, MEXICAN FOOD, pumkin-flavored everything, STARBUCKS, chicken salad from the Cheese Shop in Concord, and the list goes on....
Anything glaring I forgot??? 

Via.

On a more serious note, traveling to the U.S. is a big effing deal for... anyone not from the 37 countries able to travel freely under the Visa Waiver Program (that's 37 out of 197 countries in the world, or a slim 19% of countries). Forget immigration, I'm just talking about simple tourist/business trips. So this is a really big deal. And we're basking in (somewhat bitter) gratitude for it all.

Just looking at this map literally makes my blood boil. And after further reading, West Africa as a region has the highest visa refusal rate in the world. Awesome.

  The United States and its territories
  Visa free countries
  Visa Waiver Program countries


Well, I didn't mean to end this super exciting post on such a depressing tone... even though that search really did leave a terrible taste in my mouth. We shall focus on gratitudegratitudegratitude!

In other news, the tailor delayed my order until tonight, womp womp. Three weeks late, but I am still so excited to share the outcome with you all!

Happy Monday!

1 comment:

  1. Hope you have a great time. I'm now starting to understand a little about the visa program. I live in America and take alot for granted. I visted and lived in Senegal before and everyday their are lines of people that get denied everyday. I tried to invite my good friend and they denied her a visa. I was so upset I have not seen any of my friends in 3 yrs everyone gets denied. So now I am going back to live in Senegal and I need a visa now which is werid. For over 10 years was able to travel back and forth without issues.

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