I went to the post office today to get a replacement passport for the one I lost in the fire in my old apartment building in Washington Heights. Last time I went to get a passport it was a huge ordeal taking three or four trips to make sure I had all of the documentation needed.
Last time I had to present the state issued ID, a copy of my social security card, a copy of a bank card, and have a friend come and fill out the documentation form saying that he had known me for more than 2 years. All of this before they would even stamp my paperwork to send it out.
This time, I came loaded for anything. I had all of the documentation above (along with a friend to come and sign the DS-71) plus a copy of my work ID, a copy of my current 1099 form from last year for my investment portfolio and my 1999 tax return (they said to have something more than five years old). So here I am...I am ready for everything.
I got to the counter with my friend Lisa and I'm prepared for everything. She asks for my ID and I pull out my originals and copies of everything. I'm ready for anything they ask. Lisa's filling out the DS-71 while the woman behind the counter takes out just my state ID card and pushes all of the other documentation I made sure I had copied back through the slot.
All of the painstaking pulling of documents and everything I thought I would need to make sure that it would just be a one trip deal. I kinda got pissed that everything needed to get the passport last time wasn't needed this time but I was just thankful that the process was pretty painless (despite the money I shelled out for expedited service). It's just another step to 2 weeks in Italy.