Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Hello, new template!

Dear Blog,

I decided to finally upgrade to the new blogger template.

I'll figure something out when I decide to make you more personalized. Site editing is not as easy as HTML anymore.

Anyway, hope you like your new template.


Thirdy Lopez

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hurricane Irene

I was unfortunate enough to have my last weekend in my US Trip to experience one of the worst hurricanes to reach East Coast US in years.

Meet Hurricane Irene

She is a hurricane who passed over the East Coast US this weekend.

Weekend? Of all the days... WEEKEND!

Anyway, I was supposed to tour Philadelphia on this Saturday or Washington, DC or New York again but...
Hurricane Irene came and all the plans got scratched. I was able to see Philadelphia at night but the pictures weren't that good so we went back on Saturday Morning but when we finished touring the Franklin Institute. Rain was already pouring and I wasn't able to get pictures at the LOVE park in the morning.

All is good though as we were safe and I got stuff at the bed and bath works store. Even if the store closed when we were still choosing things to buy. The People who worked there weren't rude at us, though.

And when the winds were pretty strong... We were safe inside the house and we hadn't had any power outages.

The next day, Sunday. It was still raining and some roads are flooded so plans for DC didn't follow through. But we were able to see a movie and do a little shopping.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Face it!

Fail ang 30 day challenge... Tamad ko kasing mag-blog.. Ayan na stuck na ako sa Day 2...

Ang OA pa ng estimates ko!

Onto the next na lang....

60 minutes before uwian! WEEEEEEEEEE!!!

Monday, August 08, 2011

My US Visa Interview

One lazy morning, my project manager asked me if I could do a particular task. Being the "expert" in the part of our system, I could do the task being asked if given the ample training.

Later that week, I was asked to accomplish all the forms needed for a US Visa Application. I didn't really think much of it until around last month when the project was approved and I finished collecting the requirements.

My Visa interview was scheduled on a Monday, August 1 at 6:30am. Out travel admin asked me to go at the venue at least an hour before but I arrived at the US Embassy at 6:00am. I was really nervous as our company has 100% US VISA approval rate and given my age and my marital status, the probability of being denied was great.

At  my arrival, I waited in line for about an hour before entering the US Embassy building. At around 7am, they were scanning my bag for electronic things as they are not allowed inside the building. Then, I was directed to a ticketing booth that gave out numbers. Then, a US Embassy employee asked for people with the numbers and asked to enter the building that issues visa.

Then, we lined up for initial interviews, Then finger printing.

Then, the dreaded interview where the consul will either get your passport and issue you a visa or ask you to leave with a letter of requirement.

The wait was a quite long.

Applicants were there watching other applicants denied or granted a US Visa.

There are 10 consuls that handle the interview. The first 3 handles seafarers and the last 7 handles non-immigrant visa meaning tourist or business.

One of them was this Asian girl who I heard was very strict in granting visas.

I prayed that I don't get her as my interviewer. So time went and the number of an applicant who was chatting me displayed in the asian girl's window. Good luck, buddy!

When it was his turn to be interviewed, my number suddenly displayed at her window. So I positioned myself at a seat in front of her window and watched as my fellow applicant was being grilled with questions. The applicant is an accountant who shall  be attending training in Texas for a week. After a number of questions, the asian girl consul gave him a single entry visa for the purpose of his training.

I'm only needing a US Visa for my business trip so I wasn't expecting multiple entry visa or something grand... I just want to maintain the 100% approval rate for US visas of  my company.

So when my fellow applicant left his passport to the consul and I walked up to the Asian girl's window for my interview.

Q: Purpose of your trip?
A: Training for blah blah
Q: Do you have family or relatives in the US?
A: Yes. blah blah (malayong kamag-anak po sa malayong lugar to be safe)
Q: Clarification sa Opis na pupuntahan ko sa US
A: (Specific na ito)
Q: How much is your monthly salary?
A: Sinagot ko.
Q: How long have you been working in your company
A: Sinagot ko. (yung before sa aken 2010 siya naemploy pero nagrant naman siya ng visa)
Q: What course did you finish? Where?
A: Sinagot ko.

I was granted a single entry visa for the purpose of my training.

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