Monday, August 20, 2007

But it ain't even GREEN

Quite a day today.

Just over two years ago we moved lock, stock and dog (sans baby at that time ;) from sunny San Diego to the unknown of Durham, NC. I had been offered a new job, and I had cheekily asked on condition if they'd sponsor me for my Green Card - that ultra-magic credit card-sized piece of plastic that many an alien has craved for and some even died for, that allows me to be a permanent resident, and free to move about the country. I'd been working for the previous five years on an H1-B work visa, but like all good bits of paper, they invariably come to an end, this H1-B being October 2007.

So nearly 20 months ago my employer's attorneys started gathering the pile of information necessary to file for the Green Card. We had a few blips along the way (never let your daughters marry or become a lawyer, unless they own the practice); but never thwarted, often as worried as hell, I gathered certificate after certificate, reference after global reference (all a bit sad when you find previous employers' senior management - invariably good friends - have passed away) and grey hair after another.

Hey, a couple of years ago I even ended up under a San Diego cat scanner with a suspected TMI from this pressure. Would I get the Green Card? Would I be partnerless if I didn't (of course not, I was later told in the recovery room)? Would I lose a job I really enjoyed? After six years of living in the US, it's amazing what emotional and fiscal roots one ties oneself up in.

Nine months ago, everything was filed with the USCIS.

Last Monday I received an e-mail from the USCIS that my permanent residency had been approved and my "welcome to the USA" letter was in the mail. I cried in my office as I read that simply written message from the feds on high. Bottle of champagne that night.

Tuesday another e-mail arrived. The actual Green Card was being printed and should be with me in three weeks.

Thursday last week the official welcome letter arrived.

And today, the Green Card arrived. The USCIS outdid itself on its timing. Thank you.


Noel said...

Congrats! Welcome aboard and all that :)

Dawn (aka SandyBottom) said...

Congrats! So glad to know you'll be around for awhile.

Michael said...

Well, well, well, isn't that super! Good on you, girl!
Now when do you begin working on the Canadian equivalent? I'll sponsor you folks...! ;-)

DaveO said...

Major congratulations! The Republic needs many more kayaking, tele skiing, and rare venison loving citizens!

Ron said...

Congrats!! Very good news!

Capt'n "O" Dark 30 said...

I'll alert the FBI "Frozen Butt Inc." that you are free to travel to the great Nort'woods of Wisconsin and beyond.

You'll still need training in how to pour a tap beer and be introduced to a bass lake martini.

no rules apply - lets paddle

David said...

The speed with which USCIS processed this application--it happened in less than half the time that it took for the last one I observed--speaks clearly to the quality of the candidate. We all win!

Kristen said...

Thanks so much everyone, for your kind words. I may just have to stay a wee bit longer after all!