Friday, January 11, 2008

A Hitch

As you may have guessed, there is a problem in my visa process.

In a nutshell, the Korean imigration officers have rejected my police check as "not apostilled" (even though it was apostilled). Because the State of Michigan Office of the Great Seal does not put the actual word "apostille" on apostilled documents, the Korean imigration office thinks the document was not apostilled (understandable).

World English Service Ltd is currently doing all that they can to convince the imigration office that the documents are apostilled. The wonderful director, Marilyn, has assured me that this should be straightened out in just a few days, and has also assured me that I did everything correctly.

Obviously I'm uber-stressed right now (although my stress is mostly about work), as well as a little nervous/upset about this hitch in the process. I really, really, really want to be in Korea, and I desperately want to know when I get to go. At the same time, I realize that this is just a delay. I did everything correctly, down to the most minute detail. I believe that I am supposed to go to Korea. I really think God wants me there. Why else would I have such peace about the decision to go, and how else can you explain everything working out so well before?

This is just a small delay, like many people often have. It doesn't mean I'm not going, just that a few things have to be worked out first. When I'm finally in Korea, I'll laugh about this. In the meantime, I'm just going to pray very hard that it gets resolved. I trust World English Service, in particular I trust the director, Marilyn, and I know that they will do everything they can as quickly as they can. More than that, I trust God! I don't doubt for one moment that I will soon be fulfilling my dream of living in beautiful Gyeongju.

I really shouldn't complain too much about this rejection of my police check. Up until now things have gone swimmingly for me with the visa process. How many people get a background check from the FBI in only nine days? Granted I have had some small difficulties, like having to drive to Lansing in a snowstorm for an apostille, but honestly, this really hasn't been that hard.

On the bright side, things could be a lot worse!

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"Passage—immediate passage! the blood burns in my veins! Away, O soul! hoist instantly the anchor!
Cut the hawsers—haul out—shake out every sail!
Have we not stood here like trees in the ground long enough?
Have we not grovell’d here long enough, eating and drinking like mere brutes?
Have we not darken’d and dazed ourselves with books long enough?

Sail forth! steer for the deep waters only!
Reckless, O soul, exploring, I with thee, and thou with me;
For we are bound where mariner has not yet dared to go, And we will risk the ship, ourselves and all.

O my brave soul!
O farther, farther sail!
O daring joy, but safe! Are they not all the seas of God?
O farther, farther, farther sail!"

~Walt Whitman, "Passage to India"