Saturday, February 02, 2008

Trying to get a new passport

Cinqueterre - three years ago, originally uploaded by CharlesFred.

Here is a photo of me three years ago at the end of a walk from Manorolo to Riomaggiore, two of the villages of Cinque Terre on the Ligurian Coast of Italy. The sun shone all day, there was almost no wind and it felt warm, especially with the sun's rays reflecting off the Medietrranean Sea in the west.

I could be there next weekend as well, havoing got as far as Grenoble for my work, but Fred fancies a(nother) weekend at home next weekend, so I'll probably be coming back on Friday through Paris.

A fgood thing we have the Schengen agreement which allows us to travel through countries like Belgium, France and Italy witout a passport, as I will be without a passport in the coming two weeks, until they issue me with new one. After my experience in South Africa two weeks ago, it was time to replace my current passport, with its colourful visas from Eritrea, Syria, Yemen, Somaliland and so on....

I had heard that one can get a passport in one day in London, at less than it would cost to get a new one in Amsterdam, but because my passport was issued in Amsterdam, they would not issue a new one on London... so it was off to the Consulate near the Vondelpark yesterday. A reasonably long cycle ride made more difficult by the strong wind, to get there and be told that as from that day (1st February) they had changed the opening times, such that it was already closed at 12.30... nothing to be found about this on the website which I had looked at earlier in the morning. So it was a cycle back home, with a flat tyre and I will try again on Monday. Oh well...

Back here, it has been a nice sunny day, much less windy than the past couple of days and spring is definiely on its way, despite us only having had a few days of winter just before Christmas. This evening we go to a birthday party.


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