I’ve been in a bit of a blogging lull recently. To tell the silly truth, it’s because I was coming up on my 100th post, and wanted to do something special for it, and couldn’t decide what to do! But I’ve learned that if you procrastinate long enough, your 100th blog post will basically write itself!
In my last post, I wrote about a letter we’d gotten from the Danish immigration office asking me to come to the service center with my passport (something you’re supposed to do when you hand in your application, but we mailed ours). Since I didn’t have a Swedish permit yet (it’s still under consideration, six months later), I didn’t think I should go over the border. We made several calls and no one really seemed to know what we should do, however, Andreas’s helpful forum came to our rescue again, and we were advised to just go, so we planned to go on Monday (yesterday).
The weekend was fantastic. I had just recovered from being sick, we got to babysit a one-year-old on Saturday morning (best morning!) and we went out for leisurely shoe and grocery shopping on Sunday, and then remembered that we have a ping-pong table in the basement, and played for hours! We kept our minds off of the following day, trying not to hope, fearing for the worst, and preparing for the mediocre.
Sunday night I got one of the worst nights of sleep. I woke up what seemed like every few minutes, and when I woke up at 4:48 am I was just relieved that it was close enough to the time my alarm was supposed to go off that I could finally just get up. I had enough time to get dressed, and even put on some makeup (which I mostly only do when I’m nervous or excited). I made sure to pee before I left (which is priority #1, if you know me) and we left on time! We took the train which was kind of fun for me still (although I’m sure I’ll get over it soon enough), and when we got to our stop, we had to walk about twenty minutes to get to the service center, so we arrived at about 7 am.
Here’s where the trouble started. Andreas swore that it opened at 8, and that they let people in to wait half an hour early (at 7:30), but it turns out it doesn’t open until 8:30 and we can’t get in until 8. Now it wasn’t freezing out, and I wouldn’t have minded if I didn’t suddenly have to pee. That glass of orange juice I had chugged before I left suddenly sounded like a terrible idea. Over the next hour, I progressed from being uncomfortable, to having to pee so badly that I had to sit on the steps and breathe through the pain. However, I am proud to say that I made it through to 8:00 and left Andreas to take a number while I ran (literally) to the nearest bathroom.
Now, that was probably too much information, but the point is that after I finally (finally) got to pee, I felt so good, that I was prepared for anything. If they scolded me for coming to Denmark without a visa, so be it. At least I wasn’t bursting with orange juice. We got number 11, so we didn’t have to wait long, which was fortunate as Andreas and I discovered that we have very different ways of expressing nervousness. He likes to talk. I like to not talk.
When our number was called, I showed the woman my letter and my passport and she rifled through some papers behind her, pulled out a packet, and gave it to me. For a moment I thought I’d forgotten how to read, but soon a cautious smile spread across my face. “Udlændingstyrelsen giver dig opholdskort efter EU-reglerne” It was a yes.
So I got my biometrics taken, and we left, Andreas taking the bus to work, and me hopping a train back to Sweden (and losing my phone on the way…)
I don’t remember the last time I felt this giddy, this comfortable, this excited, and nervous in the best sort of way. As soon as we can find an apartment in Copenhagen (not particularly easy) we’ll move, and I will get my card, start my integration process, improve my Danish, apply for jobs…start a REAL LIFE.
As excited as I am I’m also nervous of course, as is expected with any life change, but it’s finally in a good way, and I’m so excited. I’m also enjoying these last leisurely weeks before we have to deal with paperwork and the business of moving, buying furniture, kitchen stuff, etc. of which we have basically nothing. I can enjoy my time here now that an end is in sight, and I’m treasuring the friendships I managed to make in my six months of living here. I’m looking forward to the next chapter, and hoping I’ll be able to find new friends (ones I can keep!) and stay in touch with the old.
Copenhagen, here I come! Now I really will be an American Hermit Crab in Denmark!
So in the end, I’m glad I held off on my 100th post…worth it.