As I mentioned in my last post, Elisa and Oliver recently travelled to Italy to visit her family. We were quite worried about Elisa traveling with a newborn without me. Little did we know that was the least of our concerns.
What Elisa discovered when she reached border control in Italy floored her. According to the security agent, Oliver, as an Italian citizen, is not allowed to leave Italy without an Italian passport! What?!? How can they just keep him??
This sent Elisa and I into a frantic scramble to figure out how to remedy this before November 16th when they are scheduled to return. After much research (on Elisa’s part since I’m terrible at it), Elisa discovered a quagmire of bureaucratic hoops we needed to jump through that involved:
- Elisa filling out some forms in Italy and getting them notarized
- Elisa expediting those documents to me
- Me signing and notarizing those documents
- Me requesting an expedited long-form birth certificate
- Then driving to Jefferson City to get some crazy stamp-thing put on said birth certificate
- Whilst making copies of various other documents
- Before expediting eeeeeverything to the Italian consulate in Chicago
- Plus, including a paid envelope to expedite the passport back to Missouri
- And then expediting the passport to Italy
Phew! Even if you just skimmed that, I bet you can tell that it was harrowing, not to mention adding the uncertainty of how long things would take to process and travel. At one point, we even realized that, if the passport arrived too close to her return flight, it would have been less expensive (due to how expensive changing their return plane tickets would have been) for me to fly Oliver’s passport to Italy! God is merciful, though, and everything was done quickly. The consulate officer, thanks to Elisa’s, ahem, prodding, even processed Oliver’s passport and had it sent out again within a couple hours of receiving our documents. That is unheard of!
So, all that’s to say, the title of this post is a bit misleading. For awhile there, it did seem as though Oliver was a hostage of Italy (and who can blame them for wanting to keep such a cute baby?). However, thanks to some elbow grease, UPS, and a whole lot of divine grace, they will be safely returning to give me a long-awaited hug this Saturday. And it couldn’t be soon enough.