I turn 30 this year and The Hubs, being the amazingly awesome and wonderful husband that he is, booked us a cruise to Bermuda! We're so excited to get away and spend some time just the two of us. Unfortunately we just realized that my passport is expired. This is a huge pain in the hiney, especially because we are traveling within two weeks. Because of the short time frame, I needed to take a trip to Philly for the renewal. The fact that my passport was initially issued pre-wife status only makes things more complicated because I also needed proof of my name change. More on that later. . .
So, after Kaleb's meeting was over and we picked up Jakey from our friend's house, we came home and I got ready to leave. My appointment was at 1pm so we thought that me leaving at 11:15 would get me there in plenty of time. Well, that was not the case. Traffic was TERRIBLE!! The passport place told Dave that if I arrived 15 minutes late for my appointment, they wouldn't take me and I would have to reschedule. This put me in a little bit of a panic since I was on the highway and hardly moving at all. I just kept watching my estimated time of arrival creep up, eventually landing on 1:13. We decided that I should still go to my appointment and see if I could get it done even though I was clearly going to be late. By the time I got there, parked, paid for parking, got to the building and went through security it was well past my appointment time but this didn't seem to matter. They were taking people without any appointments at all - all that rushing for nothing. I wasn't too annoyed yet though because at least I wouldn't have to make the trip back another day.
Ok, so I'm in the right building, even in the right line, when a guy comes by and asks if I filled out the application. "What application", I say, which clearly indicates that I did not fill out the correct application. So, I get out of line and sit down to fill that out. (Also, not sure why but I've typed "fill" three times now and each time spelled it "phill". Weird). Application completed, back in line. Smooth sailing. Ha! Not even close! I got in line and when I got up to my window, everything was going well until the man helping me asks for my marriage license. I hand him what I thought was the correct thing and he tells me it's wrong. I happened to have another form in my folder-o-goodies but that isn't the correct form either. I need to have a form with a seal, he tells me. I have no form with a seal, I tell him. This leads to me needing to fill out another application for people who don't have a real, legitimate marriage license. Fortunately the super nice man who was helping me didn't make me get out of line and go back to the application-filling-out-table so I was able to just do that real quick and continue with the process. When it was all said and done, our cruise cost us an additional $110 for the passport renewal, $60 for the expiditing and $25 for the change of name passport application. Fortunately they would be able to mail my new passport to us and it would get there in time via priority so I saved us a whopping $12 for overnight shipping. Yay me!
Ahhh, updated passport aquired. Now for the long, trafficy drive home. Seems simple enough but unfortunately this was only the beginning of my six and a half hour adventure. When I walked out of the passport place, I couldn't find my car. If you know me, you might not be suprised by this but I know for sure exactly where I parked. I guess that's not entirely true. I knew the physical location of my car but what I failed to realize was that I was parked in a "press" spot and my car was towed about 10 minutes before I got to it. That's when I about lost it. I called The Hubs in tears, close to hyperventation, and explained my situation. He was very gracious. Right when I was on the phone with him, a parking authority lady walked by and was able to get me the number for the place where my car would be. I asked if I could walk there and she said no, I would need to get a cab. Great. How does one go about getting a cab in Philly? I asked Dave this and he said "go out on the street and just start waving your hands". Not very helpful, but it did make me laugh and calm me down a smidge. Right then though, a cab drove by so I waved at him, told him where I needed to go and a $15 cab ride later, I was at the impound lot. (I'm not going to lie. . .I held my breath a little bit in the cab praying this man was taking me to the right place...the whole thing was a little creepy!!) I went in, waited in several long lines and eventually got my car back for a mere $175 towing fee plus an additional $51 for the actual ticketable offense. If you're keeping track, our very well though out and budgeted for vacation has now acrued an additional $436 in unexpected fees. Awesome.
In an effort to bookend this post with positives, when I got home Kaleb showed me the sticker chart he had made me this afternoon. Apparently every time I do something nice for him or Jakey, I earn a sticker. I have two stickers.
And here are some pictures of my awesome afternoon for your viewing pleasure:
Traffic on the way there.
Thinking things were looking up but there was still
much more traffic to be had in that .3 miles.
much more traffic to be had in that .3 miles.
My home away from home - the Philadelphia Parking Authority.
The "rust building" that housed the people guarding the way to my car.
My car in its home away from home - B23.
Goodbye PPA. . .I hope to NEVER see you again!!
Oh, this was another fun part of my trip. As I started driving home, I once again got stuck in traffic and realized my gas light was on. When I initially left my house, I knew I was a little bit low but figured that if everything went according to plan, I'd be totally fine. Well, this trip was anything but smooth sailing so I needed to get off the highway and find a gas station. I actually did pretty good driving around in the city on my own. I guess that can be considered another positive of this day. It certainly could have been worse!