What’s the most time you’ve ever spent apart from your favorite person? Tell us about it.
I had to ask him. He’s the one that remembers dates, places & names. I remember the funny things, the trivia which isn’t important, but sometimes comes in handy for crosswords. But I didn’t remember how long we were parted.
It was very early in our married life. We were married in London 28 years ago and stayed there for the next nine months. Then $$$$ called and my new husband went back to teach summer school.
What kept me busy for the next four months was getting my immigration visa sorted out at the American Embassy.
The parking spaces there are much wider than the usual British ones; the Yanks have great big cars (or did then; I’ve noticed Mini Coopers are very popular over here now). But here I am being side-tracked. Where was I?
Back and forth I went (in my Mini) to fill out forms, and wait; be interviewed, and wait. No problems as far as I could see. Next was the official health check, waiting again.
Side track #2: This was the height of the AIDS crisis and there was lots of blood-letting and other testing to be done. One poor girl was in floods of tears because her fiance was waiting in the US and she had been denied a visa. “Everyone will think I have AIDS,” she wailed. I wasn’t worried.
The doctor I saw (a portly, affluent-looking Harley Street type), just said “You had a physical recently; you don’t want me to be poking around again, do you?” I said “Not unless you have to.” To which he replied “That was the right answer,” and that was that. And he probably got paid a bunch for that 5 minute “consultation.”
So I booked my plane from London, and in the US my husband’s relatives planned a big welcoming celebration for my arrival.
My son treated the whole family to a slap-up farewell dinner at a fancy restaurant the day of my departure.
But somehow the visa hadn’t come through. I decided I would just use my visitor’s visa as the UK and US had a reciprocal agreement, so we had gone to the airport with high hopes.
Alas, no. “If you are applying for a permanent visa you have to use that one” and I was not allowed to board.
We’d had our farewell dinner and loving goodbyes, but it was back to London and waiting again. The ceremony went ahead without me in Texas.
Well, I don’t remember it taking such a long time, but I wasn’t the one alone in the house; I had all my family around me. The return to the airport with visa in hand was a very muted affair.
Everything comes to he who waits, and finally my husband and I were reunited in time for our first anniversary. Meeting my new relatives, however, had to wait.