Tuesday, February 15, 2005

This is it. At 2:45pm, I will have my I-485 Adjustment of Status Adjudication, otherwise known as the Green Card interview. I’ve compiled nearly a ream of documentation to prove my marriage is indeed legitimate and that I qualify to become a permanent resident of the United States. Next stop, citizenship, another 5 years away.

Dealing with the US immigration apparatus has been a nightmare. USCIS, formerly the INS, is a colossal, labyrinthine bureaucracy, run by feckless goons with little regard for the welfare of the immigrants with whom they deal. On several occasions, my livelihood as a legal resident of this country came down to the fickle whims of a sole USCIS officer, without the possibility of appeal. Come through the wrong Port of Entry, in front of the wrong officer who has the wrong attitude and the wrong interpretation of immigration statute guidelines, and one could find oneself stranded at the border.

The first time I entered the US for work, my application was reviewed at the Pearson International Airport immigration checkpoint by a very young agent who seemed to think the employment letter vouching for my credentials was a tad light. He made me leave the checkpoint, go back through security, and beg the Delta ticket counter to use their fax machine to get a new letter, revised with the latest bureaucratic jargon. I returned, fresh letter in hand, only to be sequestered in a small, barren room for 4 hours before being released, grudgingly. I don’t know how they thought I posed a potential threat to national security or to the labor market. What I do know is that while I was wrangling with immigration concerns, the INS was busy eagerly approving visa applications for Islamo-fascists who were conspiring to fly commercial airliners into several prominent East Coast landmarks. Can you say, “scathing indictment”?

Anyhoo, there’s a 99.98% chance that in a few hours I’ll finally be a bonafide green card holder. I’m currently taking suggestions for celebratory libations.


At 2/16/2005 8:34 AM, Blogger BACdanielle said...

Great news! How did the interview go? A few months ago, I had to write a letter vouching for a friend. She is an Australian married to one of my childhood friends.

Anyway, I want to buy you a celebratory drink (maybe a green drink??) this weekend sometime. Will Andrea be coming with you to some of the festivities?


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