Wish I got Arrested

June 28, 2010

TTMadrid accepted us.  It was exciting.  We ate leftover Carvel Ice Cream Cake with those little chocolate crunch things.  It all went so fast.  The interview was at 4:00 am, we learned of our acceptance later in the day, and began sorting logistics soon after.  I gave a speech: ‘I thank no one but myself…’

TTMadrid provides student visas, which I thought would be fairly easy to obtain.  Went to the Spanish Consulate site, which looks kind of like those old geocities web pages.  Not really up to date, lots of graphics, tacky old-school fonts.  Like that one you had in high school before Facebook.  Mine was called ‘Sean Dillinger and His Pet Dog Frodo,’ and it had animated ferris wheels with links to (inevitably) defunct powerpoint presentations.  It was a news site focused on crime and animal shelters, averaging four hits a solstice.

Back to the consulate.  You need a lot of documentation- bank statements, passports, ticket stubs, vasectomies- and we were confident.  Buzz Lightyear confident.  Homeboy speaking Spanish in Toy Story 3.  Feel you Buzz.

Then came this: FBI criminal background check.

Dag. Called the FBI.  They picked up, ‘FBI, how may I help you?’ That had me laughing for days after.

‘I need a criminal background check.’

‘Get some prints and we’ll have it to you in twelve weeks.’

‘My appointment with the consulate is in 14 days.  Do you expedite?’


‘What if I told you I was a federal marshal?’

‘Are you?’

‘Lieutenant General Buck Torres, LAPD.’

‘Twelve weeks sir.’

That hurt.  We were up a creek.  No paddles.  On life support.  Bottom of the ninth.  Four outs.  Game seven in the locker room after a loss.

I felt like KG does in those press conferences when he’s real introverted and obviously uncomfortable and pained.

I called TTMadrid (always helpful) and asked them. They said, ‘Check to see if a local background check will do.’

I emailed the consulate.  They said, ‘That will do.  Be advised this is a one time exception, Lieutenant Torres.’

So that’s where we are.  Trying to figure out if we can get a local police check.  The funny thing is this (it’s not funny): because we don’t have a record, the CPD will not provide us with a rap sheet.  We might have to go through a private agency with a private detective with smoky hair and a cigarette voice.

But who knows if the Consulate will accept that?

We’re getting punished for being wholesome.

A couple that gets background checks together stays together.


Making Moves

June 22, 2010

Looked at a lot of different programs over the past few months.  Homegirl’s been on the research tip for a while.  Has like 85 Microsoft Word Documents with labels like ‘ItinerarySubSectionGQuadFZone’ and ‘PotentialBarcelonianLanguageAcademies.’  Right now, we’re leaning towards a TEFL program (ttmadrid.com) that looks like it will sponsor a student visa.  Cost us 2000 Euro bucks and a couple sticks of butter.


We get a visa and it’s like bye-bye birdie up in Europe.  One weekend OctoberFest.  The next weekend Prague.  The next weekend Prague: The Sequel.  The next weekend up in Iceland making videos with Sigur Ros and appreciating just how warm global warming warms.  Flash forward to the following Wednesday: Dublin, Ireland.  Visiting Great-Grandma’s grave in ol’ country, singing limericks and drinking Guin’.

Couples that stay together blog together. -sg


June 21, 2010

At the store today, we tried to plan the trip.  It mostly went well.  I’m more the John Locke (man of faith) to B’s Jack Shepard (disgruntled son of a doctor) when it comes to this trip.  Love you girl.

Drank one of those javanilla shakes.  It was the best.  It had ice cream and skim milk.  Then, an old lady (wearing sunglasses, purple jumper) ruined a nice old man’s will  to live.

‘Stay the hell away from my stuff,’ she said.

He wasn’t near her stuff. ‘Sorry. I didn’t know if it belonged to you.’

‘You don’t know anything.  I remember everything.’


He was reading a book.  She couldn’t even look at him.  She was number three of today’s wild ones.  Number one was criminally insane man who screamed out, ‘Just what time does the GODDAMN TRAIN GODDAMN’ when I was out for a walk earlier.  He was carrying a leather bag and I thought, ‘He might kill me.’

Back to Borders.  We kept looking at websites and books.  Fatigued.  Then I walked downstairs, tried to memorize last couple paragraphs of Gatsby.

Don’t tell me what I can’t do.  -sg

Hello world!

June 21, 2010

Sean and I are planning our gap year. We just found out we won’t be teaching in Madrid… disappointing and exciting. Now we have to get serious about alternate plans. Here are some options: camino de santiago, working on organic farms (Spain, France, Italy, Greece, Ireland), Spanish classes in Barcelona, Spanish classes in Granada, Spanish classes in Ecuador, volunteer work in Ecuador, Volunteer word in India, Volunteer work in Costa Rica, Rotary exchange in India, meeting Sonia in India for family member wedding in January (hi Megan and Travis!)…