Getting my reading material together may be a loose end on my mind, but here’s an issue that actually bears meaningful implications to my microcosm. I STILL HAVE NO PASSPORT! The fact is that there can be no good outcome to winding up with no passport once our day of departure arrives. With no passport I’ll be unable to join the trekking group. The tickets are locked in with an extreme discount airline reservation, so I doubt I could delay my departure any less than, oh, 3 months. I can’t just stick around in Utah since there’s nothing for me to do. I think I’d be asked to go into exile under a rock somewhere (on an uncharted pirate island, no less). Not that it offers any mitigation, but I did send out my passport application over six weeks ago. During the last week I’ve been pestering the perimeter defenses of the bureaucracy (though I’m not complaining; the USA is not the worst), and they’ve just assured me that it’s not done and to go away and suffer the sleepless uncertainty somewhere else. As a courtesy though, they add that I can call back in three business days to reaffirm that there is no hope.
Apparently my passport application was diverted to South Carolina in the wake of Hurricane Katrina (“I’m Walking on Sunshine” not) and the whole passport system must have been flooded. I have put an “expedite and overnight” order, but if there is no passport in hand by Thursday I do have an outlandish backup plan, apart from the other plan of packing up all I own and selling my kidneys (got any better ideas for me?). I have made an appointment for Friday morning at the Los Angeles Passport Agency to get it done in person. That’s right, there is a last desperation option for me. I’ll no doubt have to take a red-eye flight from SLC to LAX, drive about 500 miles (considering how good I am at getting lost), and pitch a tent in front of the office building at 11000 Wilshire Blvd in downtown Los Angeles. I know for certain that my regular passport will arrive in the mail in Utah just as I’m getting mugged or hauled off to jail for indigence, but that follows my life philosophy perfectly. Fate will always yield to irony as soon as you get up and do something asinine about it.