Christmas Day Walk

Sky, Water, Bridge and City

That nasty look­ing storm did appear, but it brought most of its force to Van­cou­ver Island, where they expe­ri­enced high winds and heavy rain. Then it hit the coastal moun­tain range and seemed to dis­si­pate. By 11 AM this morn­ing, the rain stopped, so we took a walk on the False Creek sea­wall, just like last year.

Every­thing was gray and quiet, but there were a few other peo­ple out doing the same (per­haps tak­ing a breather before a big Christ­mas din­ner — we are keep­ing things sim­ple with a roast chicken and del­i­cata squash). I was sur­prised to see a crib-style baby stroller occu­pied not by someone’s child, but their bor­der col­lie. I didn’t ask them why.

We’re tak­ing it easy today because I have an impor­tant trip com­ing up tomor­row. I’ve decided that the best way to expe­dite our get­ting Landed Immi­grant Sta­tus is for me to take all of the mate­ri­als (pass­ports, fees, pho­tographs, other assorted papers) directly to the office that is pro­cess­ing our case. That office hap­pens to be in Buf­falo, New York. Most peo­ple immi­grat­ing here would go to the office in nearby Seat­tle, but because we moved from Boston, we (in ret­ro­spect, with­out much fore­thought) chose the East coast’s Cana­dian Con­sulate, rather than the west coast’s. Another tip for peo­ple con­sid­er­ing immi­grat­ing to Canada: Choose the office clos­est to your des­ti­na­tion area, not the US point you are leav­ing.

We could get away with send­ing our pass­ports and the funds via courier and wait­ing for their return to us, but since I will be need­ing my pass­port soon in early Jan­u­ary to attend Mac­World Expo — and frankly, because I’m just not com­fort­able with send­ing off these extremely valu­able travel doc­u­ments with­out accom­pa­ny­ing them to their des­ti­na­tion — I’ve decided to fly to beau­ti­ful down­town Buf­falo in the week between Christ­mas and New Years. Yes, the office I’m vis­it­ing is indeed open for busi­ness on Wednes­day. Tues­day, when I am trav­el­ing, it is closed for the Box­ing Day Holiday.

So, I leave tomor­row morn­ing, change planes in Chicago, and arrive in Buf­falo at about 10 PM EST. Bright and early at 8 AM the next morn­ing, I appear at the Cana­dian Con­sulate and present all of our doc­u­ments. Accord­ing to their web site, they make every effort to get cases processed the same day, and return all items between 1 and 3 PM. If all goes accord­ing to plan, I then fly back at 6 AM EST the next day. My route this time is via Wash­ing­ton, DC, which is an odd way to go, but strangely sym­bolic, I think. I should arrive in Van­cou­ver at just before noon, and at that time, become a Per­ma­nent Res­i­dent of Canada. If all goes accord­ing to plan.