Passports….Part I

To travel overseas it’s imperative to have a passport. I don’t, my daughters don’t.

Many moons ago, in the prehistoric era before children I did own a passport. But, it expired and with no international travel planned (no way was I spending more than 3.5 hours on a plan with young children!) it seemed foolish to spend the money renewing it.

So, now it seems is the time to apply for our passports.

Step 1 – the dreaded passport photos. A seemingly simple process, with only the finished product to be feared.

Off we all go to the photo shop. Their pull down screen had just that minute broken but being resourceful people they bull-dogged clipped a table cloth to the shelf and we had out photos taken. We fought the urge to smile as that is now a no-no, and is not a natural thing for children to do when there is a camera pointed at them. Rather than wait the 45 minutes for them to be fiddled with and printed we came home. Several hours later, as we were walking out the door to pick up the photos, the photo shop called and said we needed to re-shoot as the background was too light.

No problem, we were heading out anyway.

So, we go through the whole palaver again. Don’t smile, chin up, chin down. We wait around the shopping centre for the required time spending money and eating unnecessary ice-creams to pass the time.

This time the photos didn’t save to the memory card. Take 3. Chin up, chin down, don’t smirk, hair back. This time I wait while they transfer the photos to the computer.

After three goes the photos are fine and I pick them up the next morning.

Um…..I really really hope nothing happens to us and they use our passport photos on the news. These days your whole face fills the photo and with no smiling they are rather grim. And when I compare them to my previous passport photos – the first taken at 18 and the second taking at the thinnest I’ve been in my adult life – it’s all rather depressing.

Step 2
A seemingly simple step. Fill out the forms.

This involves locating everybody’s birth certificates (easy) and my marriage certificate (thankfully had the fore-thought of applying for it last year), and quite a bit of time filling in all the appropriate boxes.

The last step was to have someone sign the back of our photos, to confirm that the photos were really of us. not a problem, or so I thought, until the first person I asked said ‘no’, they don’t do those sort of things. Bewildered but un-fazed, another friend sign them and we are good to head to the post-office and lodge the forms.

I need a couple of weeks before I can face Step 3, though….

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