I am back in the USA! I arrived into LAX last Wednesday, spent the evening with my friend Matt and flew to Seattle on Thursday, to see my friends there. Then Saturday morning I took a train to Bellingham. But the story goes on! Monday morning I went up to Vancouver to try to get a visa at the Chinese Consulate there. First I had to get to Canada, where the border guards are all friendly. There was no wait, so I went straight in, but they asked me some questions that I answered wrongly to, so they sent me in for a thorough search. They inspected my brain through a experimental surgical procedure that made me smell things funny and made my arms and legs twitch occasionally, and then they poked around in my lungs and liver for telltale signs of a lie. But they found none. There were no lies within me, and eventually they had to sew me up and search the car instead. Then finally they let me go after about an hour and I got to go onward and sit in traffic to get to Vancouver. Such a lovely thing waiting in traffic is. It is nothing like waiting for the wind to blow on the boat, where you can ignore the world and take a nap or something. Not so in traffic. You must be alert. I have decided I do not like traffic. After the boat, there is no comfortable place to eat in a car, or lie down and sleep while you are going along. And the autopilot just doesn't work. So then I got to the consulate, where I waited in line and eventually discovered that I wasn't going to be able to make the same-day service. Which means they would have my passport, and I can't go back to the USA without it. So I went to talk to one of the information people, and discovered that in fact they wouldn't give me a visa here anyways! I am not welcome in Canada-China Visa land. I need to go to San Francisco.
Now San Francisco is a long ways away, so after thinking about how to figure it all out, I have decided not to go, but to mail it away and wait until next week and see if I get the visa. So now I am in Bellingham for a week. I also played frisbee last night, and it was wonderful, but I am out of shape terribly, so I am sore. Tomorrow I will play again.
I don't have a passport anymore, the postal service has it right now, and soon the Chinese will have it. After that I may get it back with a modification and I hope soon.
Then off to China in a bit.