|Subject: Re: Scary Situations (was: Passports)|
Following this thread I wanted to share two passport stories.
On our trip to Toronto this past June I arrived on Air Canada from Philadelphia and was detained at Canada passport control for about thirty minutes because my photo did not match me. I had lost 221 pounds since the passport was reissued in 2001. After offering up references and doctor's phone numbers, the very courteous folks allowed me entry.
A second occurrence took place in 1987 during a three week vacation to explore California. Following two nights on Catalina Island we drove to San Diego and after visiting some family opted for Tijuana Mexico for the day. This was our last foray until flying back east in several days. My hair had grown, I chose not to shave and was quite tan from three weeks in California plus I locked my wallet in the car in San Diego so as not to carry it into Mexico.
After an enjoyable day in Tijuana i was separated from my friends coming across the pedestrian walk to US Immigration and immediately singled out. I still believe to this day the bandanna I purchased was the final piece. So of course immigration was convinced I was up to something and was being denied entry back into the US and my friends had no idea what was transpiring. When I was about to give up hope I felt something in my sock: lo and behold my US Passport. The entire attitude changed and after several minutes I was on my way. Reliving this 16 years later although it sounds funny now, was quite unnerving then. Semper Paratus
Vince in Philadelphia