July 8th 2008

Jawad was going to arrange with somebody so we could drive directly to the US embassy instead of driving to the main public parking lot and taking the embassy bus which all in all takes approximately an hour. Unfortunately, because of the bomb a couple days before, no passes are being issued.

I am ready by 8am with all the documents and sit in the main lobby waiting for them. We got to the embassy parking lot around 11am and get to the embassy around 11:40 with only 20 minutes to spare. My name gets called quickly and the guy is friendly and he is asking for various documents. After about 10 minutes, he just asks for all the documents I have and says he will sort through them and let me know. So, I give him all the documents.

A couple hours later, he called me in again and asked me to fill out a couple simple forms which I did. Then he says a visa agent will call me. I thought he was the visa agent but I guess not. So, I wait. For today, I have had some water. It is about 95 deg F; cooler than I thought and the embassy is air conditioned. Surprisingly, the bathroom is a traditional hole in the ground at the US embassy. I’m wearing a suit and I know there is no way I can maneuver in a suit with the hole in the ground without somehow soiling my own clothes so I hold off on talking a 0000002 .

2, 3pm, 4pm. The crowd is dwindling but nothing. Jawad took off and a driver will wait for us when we are done. At 4:45, the security guard tells me I should ask the embassy folks if they are going to call me. I go and check and they tell me to wait patiently. At 5:15pm, the security guard goes and asks himself since we are the only ones left and security is only waiting for us. Finally at 5:30pm, a friendly guy tells us that one pile of documents is ok and he points to the thick stack but that in the Judge’s document, he put conditions such as needing a bond, coming to Pakistan every year to show the health of the child and giving rights to the biological parents if they ever show up. To issue a visa it needs to be irrevocable and unconditional. I ask them for specific language they want the judge to write and so I can give to the judge so he says to give him a few minutes and he’ll provide some. Bad news. Now I have to go back to the judge. The embassy agent called me back and decided he would not give me any language and sent me on my way. They held the bus for us so people who left the embassy office an hour before were waiting on the bus for us.

Horrible day from start to finish. I am drained mentally plus hungry. I got to Jawad’s place and went to the bathroom. I sit on the toilet and am not sure if I have diarrhea or just suppressed gas from holding it in all day. I let a juicy wet one rip for at least 2 minutes on the toilet. I’m worried that I already have diarrhea which I always expect to get when I go to India so why not Pakistan. I eat, hang out at Jawad’s place. I just want Jamal to come home.

A servant girl takes care of Jamal. I’m guessing she is around 13 years, name is Bushra. You can tell she enjoys playing with Jamal plus she treats me with respect. Perhaps she has to, but either way, she treats Jamal well.

I get dropped off by the driver at my place, pack my things and head off to bed for my 8:00am flight back to Multan.