18 January 2008

big plans

I called the airline that is going to get me from London to the location of big post-bar exam trip. (Destination announcement coming once I've PAID for the tickets - what, you thought the Netherlands was the big trip? Ha. I said big trip. BIG TRIP. Europe is not really a big trip. I mean, don't get me wrong. If you have never left the US and you are going to Europe, I am going to be thrilled and excited and happy that your world is getting bigger. But really? I was in Liberia before I was four months old. Europe is just not that exciting.)

It made me all smiley and happy, calling the airline, to think of this group of people from Destination Country sitting in an office somewhere, selling tickets that will take people to their homeland. I don't know why. Somehow it just seemed so... I would use this Dutch word that vaguely means cozy and homey, but I can't spell in Dutch. I'm still not sure if I spelled droppjes correctly yesterday, even after extensive googling. It just seemed like it would be nice, when you are living in a big new country like the US where everyone is always in a hurry and, let's face it, not very nice to immigrants, to sit in an office with people who speak your language.

So I called the airline and they are sending me documentation that will allow me to pay for the ticket and then I asked about a visa.

"Do you know anything about visas, if I'm traveling on a US passport?"

"Yes," my customer service representative said, "you can get one at the airport."

"Okay," I said, "I was just wondering because the US State Department webpage seemed to say that I couldn't use dollars if I bought a visa at the airport. Do you know if they will take dollars?"

"Of course they will take dollars," he said. "That would make no sense."

Um. Okay. Still not sure I believe him. I might be getting a visa in advance.

(Note careful avoidance of saying the actual name of the currency - the State Department actually says that you can only buy a visa at the airport with local currency. I'm not doing that to keep you in the dark. I'm doing it because I carefully circumlocuted the actual name of the currency while on the phone with this guy. This is because, well, I cannot pronounce it. Hopefully I'll figure out that pronunciation once I'm there?)

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