Posted by episode81 on April 8, 2010
Before I applied for US Citizenship, I heard many horror stories.
“It took 2 years, and then I had to restart from the beginning.”
“The papers were lost, and then I had to restart from the beginning.”
“The lines were so long that I had to wait 6 hours to have my fingerprints taken.”
My experience has been very different. I applied in early December, fingerprints in January, interview in February and ceremony in March. Very swift! What is even more surprising is that I got my passport a week after the ceremony. Surprising, as I had heard many horror stories.
“The papers were lost, the lines were so long, I missed my flight …”
You get the picture!
Anywho, I digress …
Back to the stats. At the ceremony, there were 1303 people from 105 nations poised to become citizens. The largest contingent was from China, followed by India with Mexico a distant third. Countries were called in alphabetical order – all 105 of them – and we stood when our country was called. There was only one guy from Poland. He sprang out of his seat as his country was called, waving his flag and cheering. He got thunderous applause from the visitors gallery. The MC could speak 6 languages including Mandarin, Russian and Filipino!
I mentioned the surprising swiftness of my passport arrival, but here is something truly impressive. I registered to vote immediately after the ceremony. I got my first postal ballot in the mail this week! Within 2 weeks of becoming a citizen, I have already voted!
I await my summons for jury duty with less enthusiasm 😉