Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Crazy things with Passports

Hiya folks
Just under a month to go. Today I bought some thick socks for the Baltics and Russia.
After Estonia I will be taking a bus along to St Petersburg, where I will be meeting a very special someone. But enough of that.

I ventured to St Petersburg in my first big adventure in 1999. I feel in love with this city. It is truly beautiful. I walked home (to my hostel) from the Metro Nightclub at 3am as snow lightly fell to the ground and it was pretty magical. Perhaps that was just the vodka...
But I never saw one of the world's most impressive buildings, the Winter Palace, aka the Hermitage. This time I will.
The metro there is great too, so many trains and the stations are housed in old bomb shelters with chandeliers. I think Melbourne's loop is a huge disappointment in comparison.

The Mali visa is a curious thing. Earlier in the year the consulate in Western Australia was told it could no longer issue visas. The same went for all consulates worldwide I was told, so only Malian EMBASSIES had the power to do this. That meant that Tokyo was the closest place I can get a visa. Luckily they cater for Australians and with an added fee will post my passport back to me, and process in a day too which is exceptional.
The basic fact is that i posted my passport to Japan on Monday morning, express post, wondering if I would ever see it again. I'll call the embassy on Friday and see if it has been received. I've posted my passport off to a few embassies IN Australia but this is a first.

Hopefully I wont be needing an emergency replacement passport at quick speeds before I go.....

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