Got the EAD in Chicago

Got the EAD in Chicago
6/15/01 11:40 am

Todd and I had a five hour train trip to Chicago to get the EAD. With taxis, hotel and etc we spent at least $300. We left Sunday evening to get there for the 8:30 AM appointment on Monday. This is the first time I’ve had an appointment and wasn’t at all worried about anything. We got to the right building, on Jackson Street, took a cab there. Cabs were in short supply, the one we phoned was going to be half an hour. While outside waiting another one dropped someone off and I snagged it. Even then we were just in time to get there for the doors opening. There was a huge line, two blocks down one street and around the corner. We found out our appointment letter was a get out of line sooner card. The security people came along and asked who has an appointment. Then they told us to go ahead and get in. Went through the security check. In Montreal the checked through my purse and had us empty pockets. There they just xrayed all our bags (purse and overnight bag) and had us walk through the metal detector. No problem. Todd was cautious because he thought the security would be a bit tighter on the day Timothy McVeigh was executed.

Anyway, we took an escalator up to the second floor, ignored the line there and went through the glass doors to an opened room where we handed over our appointment letter and were told to sit and wait. Familiar territory, eh?

I was in the second group called up. The first batch had an 8:00 appointment which didn’t mean much since the building wasn’t open until 8:30. Its just a way of sorting people out once they get inside. I was called up and they said they needed the green letter with the yellow receipt and a drivers license or other photo ID. I didn’t have a drivers license but Todd and I had recently gotten the photo ID for the state. It looks almost the same as the drivers license card. That was fine. I checked my name and address on their paper thing and I signed my name. I still have to think to sign my married name, still have to remember its me when someone calls me by it too.

Next, a fingerprint, smudged and yet another ear picture. I actually asked the woman taking the picture what the deal is with all these ear pictures. She said she didn’t know. But she was rushed as they were pushing everyone through the process pretty quick. I went back to sit with Todd in the waiting area.

They called me up to pick up the card in about 2 minutes. I went up as they were calling up the next batch of people for ID checking. In the instructions of what to bring they had asked for the marriage license and some other things but none were asked for, only the photo ID and green and yellow receipt.

After that we were out of there. Todd wanted to go back to the hotel until our train at 4:00. But I really wanted to get to the bookstore where I hoped Jane was still working. I wasn’t sure she was still there but we went anyway. Walked part way and then got lost and took a cab. Jane was lovely, even bought me a good coffee. Todd laughs about good coffee, he doesn’t understand. 🙂 It was wonderful meeting Jane and chatting about her trip and her INS experiences. Thanks for the coffee Jane. 🙂

Hope this helps someone else. I can’t think of any other details to add. We got back late on Monday night. Todd _loved_ the train trip. I was just glad to see the end of it. lol

Read more of these old posts – Our Adventures with the Fiancé Visa (2000 – 2002)