Thursday, April 28, 2011

New picture

So, if you look to the right, I put a new picture up :) If you don't know, I got my hair dyed all pink yesterday with some blue streaks underneath. I know this isn't immigration-related, but I LOVE it :D


P.S. Only 4 more days and 19 hours to go till my interview! ^___^

Monday, April 25, 2011

Tax transcript

Wow, third update in one day!

Very quick, Ben's 2010 tax transcript came in today! Only took a week to get to him. He ordered it last Monday and got it today. I'm going to print it out later and can give that at the interview instead of the 1040 and W2s *happy*


Car reserved

Quick update:

So, about an hour ago, I made a reservation on National for a car from Thursday, May 12th to Saturday, May 14! There was also an option to "Save Time" where you can input the driver's information (license, address, birth date, etc) to save time at the counter the day of the rental. Did that. Now I just need to wait about 16 days to go pick the car up! :D


Moving route and car rental

So, a bit more than a week ago, my father and I went to CAA (like AAA in the US), so we could get a TripTik for when I move to the USA. If you don't know what a TripTik is, it's this awesome map thing. They break up your journey into many pages (for mine, it was about 20 pages), so you could get a closer look at your route. So, we told the lady where my starting and end points were and what highways I wanted to take. While we were there, I got a huge map of the USA as well as two TourBooks (have listings of motels) for Indiana/Illinois/Ohio and Michigan/Wisconsin. I'm thinking the first night I'll be stopping somewhere in Ohio, and then the second night somewhere in Wisconsin. We then went last Thursday to go pick the TripTik up. A few pictures (click them to enlarge):

This is what I got on the first trip to CAA.

The package I received for the second trip.

A view of one page of my route in the TripTik.

The route I'm taking from Burlington, Vermont to South Dakota.

I'll actually be renting a car from Vermont, not Canada. I found the cheapest price was to rent from Vermont and then drop it off in South Dakota for about $400 from National Car Rentals. Every other company I looked at was around $800, whether renting from Vermont or Montreal. There were actually very few companies that had an option of renting in Canada and crossing the border and dropping it off in the USA. That's why I decided to rent from Vermont. My dad nicely agreed to drive me and my stuff down to Vermont :) I'll actually be reserving my car at National either today or very soon!


P.S. Only 7 more days and 16 hours to go till my interview!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

DHL location chosen, interview preparation, and taxes

On Monday I signed up for a DHL branch location so the Consulate knows which branch I want my visa and passport to be mailed to after the interview.

If you want to see screenshots, you can go here. Each picture has a detailed description for each step in signing up, so click on the first picture.

Also on Monday I finished printing out everything I needed for the interview. I only have one or two things left, but I'm waiting till I get closer to the interview date to print them out. Once everything's done, I'll take a picture of my very huge (and heavy) folder.

As well, Ben finally got his tax refund last Friday, and on Monday he requested a 2010 tax transcript from the IRS. Apparently they have a form you can fill out online now instead of calling in (found here). I'm hoping he gets the transcript before the interview, so I can bring that and hand it in instead of the 1040 and W2s. It said it takes 5-10 days (although Ben doesn't know if that was total days or just business days) and there's currently only 12 and a half days left till my interview. I'm sure it will arrive before then!


Thursday, April 14, 2011

US Consulate in Montreal

So, a few months back, I found a thread that had pictures of the US Consulate. Decided to post them here if anyone's interested. Also, when I went to pick up my results for my medical on Tuesday, I decided to actually visit the Consulate myself as it was about a 5 minute walk away. I took some pictures and I'm adding them here too. If you click on any of the pictures, it will blow them up to full-size.

Picture I took of the entire building. The interview takes place all the way at the top (I believe the 19th floor).

Picture I took of where you line up outside and wait (if you get there early).

Picture I found. Different angle from the one above.

Close-up I took of the front doors.

Even closer picture that I took.

Picture I found of the front doors.

Picture I found of the sign above the doors.

Picture I found of a notice board on the front doors.


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Medical results

So, went out today to pick up my results. Before leaving, I called Medisys as instructed and they told me the results were ready. My dad had an appointment at a nearby hospital, so he dropped me off across the street from where Medisys is. I was definitely not stressed this time going to Medisys, compared to last week when I was freaking out.

Anyways, got up to the 11th floor and had to wait in line to speak with a receptionist. I think it was about 5 minutes and then I was able to go up. When I called earlier, I had asked the person on the phone if I needed to bring anything with me, but she said no. Yet when I got to the receptionist and asked for my results, she asked for my invoice paper. I told her I didn't have it, so she asked for ID. Thank goodness ID is acceptable as I would have had to go back another day if they needed my invoice. Anyways, she took my driver's license and went to find my results. She then returned and told me I could not open the two envelopes and that I had to bring them with me to the interview (duh). There was a paper stapled on top that I was allowed to open as it was just my vaccination sheet.

I took pictures of the envelopes and you can find them here. Note, the X-rays were in the brown envelope and I can tell they're on a CD. Much more convenient then carrying around a HUGE envelope of the actual X-rays.

So, no one actually told me I passed, but I'm going to assume that since I didn't hear back that I passed the medical. Not like it's hard to pass though, I just had to not have syphilis or HIV, and no past drug use or anything like that.


Friday, April 8, 2011

Labels added

Decided to go through all my posts today and add labels to each one for easier searching. For each post, I added at least one label whether it was "personal" or an "explanation". Then I added additional labels, depending on the content. I then added a gadget to the right column to show all the labels. So, if you want to find all my posts relating to "medical", for example, just click on the word "medical" and my blog refreshes to show posts about the medical. Hope this helps!


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Medical review

I survived! I survived! :D

So, my appointment was at 10am at Medisys in downtown Montreal today. I had asked months ago if my dad was willing to come with me for moral support. Plus I knew I wouldn't be able to drive; I'd be too nervous. Anyways, my dad and I left at 9am. We got there like exactly at 10am.

Waited in line till the receptionist was available. Told her I was there for a medical. She found my file and then asked for my interview letter. I had only brought the first page, and she asked where the rest was, so I'm guessing I was supposed to bring all the pages, not just the first. But she took what I had, thankfully, and made a photocopy. She then took my passport (made a photocopy of that too) and stapled my 3 pictures to various papers. She then took my vaccination record. I was given a paper (front and back) to fill out. It asked me my name, date of birth, whether I've had any of the diseases listed, if I was on medication, etc. Also, females: it asks when your last menstrual period was, so make a note of the date. I think I got the date right for mine, but who knows, lol.

After I finished filling out the paper, I brought it back to the receptionist. She then told me to wait till my name was called. I barely had time to sit back down before I was called. I followed the doctor into his office. He told me to undress to my underwear and socks behind a curtain and put on a gown. He then asked me a few questions as I was undressing. Once I was done, he did a standard physical exam. Checked my eyes, ears, and throat, took my blood pressure, listened to me breathe, and the funnest: hit my kneecap with that thing (which I've never had done before, so I was amused). I then got re-dressed. This part took all of like 5 minutes and was very quick.

I then had to go back to the waiting room. About 10 minutes later, my name was called again, by someone different, and was for the X-rays. I was showed to a little cubicle (felt like a bathroom stall, minus the toilet) and told to take off my shirt and bra, along with any jewelry, and told to put on a gown. I did that and then waited, as instructed, inside the cubicle for my name to be called. A few minutes later, a woman called my name and was shown inside the X-ray room. I was given this heavy thing to tie around my waist. I faced this white board and told to take a deep breath and hold it as the X-ray was taken. I then had to go in another position. This time my left arm was against the white board. Again, I took a deep breath and held it. That was all for the X-ray. The woman instructed me to go back to the cubicle and wait till she looked at the X-rays before getting dressed to make sure they were okay. Once I was cleared, I got dressed again and was given a red paper to hand to the receptionist. All in all, the X-ray part took about 10 minutes to do.

The longest wait now began. All I had left was the blood test. It was about 30 minutes before my name was called by another person, Melissa. She asked me how I was and I told her I was extremely nervous about the blood test. She then asked if I had gotten the influenza shot this year and told her no. She said then I'd have to get it done. I told her that I had read that flu season for immigration ended March 31. She told me to wait a second as she left the room to go talk to someone. She returned and told me that no, flu season only ended April 30. I had to get another needle stuck in me!! Anyways, blood test was up first. I requested a butterfly needle, so she got that ready. My dad was in the room with me and he came over next to me. I then started to squeeze the crap out of his hand as Melissa (such a nice nurse by the way) started "prepping" my arm. This was my first blood test ever, so I didn't know what to expect. The only pain I felt was the prick as the needle went in. Then it just felt weird (in a not good way) having the needle just sitting there in my arm. Finally it was over and the needle was out. I didn't faint! Melissa then left to get the other nurse who would be giving me the flu shot. She then came in with Melissa and prepped my left arm again for the vaccine. I began to squeeze my dad's hand again and Melissa started asking me questions to distract me. Thankfully, vaccines are quicker and   the needle was out quickly. I breathed a sigh of relief; no more needles! I said aloud that I deserved a lollipop and Melissa went to the cupboard and actually gave me a lollipop! I got up and felt a little light-headed, so Melissa told me to sit back down. She asked if I had anything to eat this morning, and I replied no as I wasn't feeling well. She then got some orange juice from a fridge that was in the room and gave it to me. After drinking that, I then felt I was okay to go back to the waiting room.

I was told I'd have to wait 20 minutes before leaving to see if I'd have a reaction to the flu shot. At like 12pm, the receptionist called me up. Told me to call before coming back to pick up the results next week. I then forked over my credit card to pay the $240 bill. It would have only cost $215, but getting the influenza shot wasn't free, so.

And that's it! All in all, I was at Medisys for exactly 2 hours. If it hadn't been for any of the waiting, I could have been done within 30 minutes. I'll be going back next Tuesday to pick up the results of the medical, along with my X-rays.


P.S. My left arm is extremely sore. I now realise that typing with only one hand is difficult and I hope this soreness goes away soon.

P.P.S. I'd like to give a huge shout out to my dad. I'm so thankful he was willing to drive me there and back again and coming inside with me for the blood test. Thank you daddy!! :D