APPROVED!

Remember how Jorge was applying for his US tourist visa? This morning he went to the American Consulate in Merida for his interview and was APPROVED!

We had heard that the consulate was being more lenient recently in giving out tourist visas. They’re usually quite strict to make sure nobody wants to go on a tourist visa and stay in the country illegally, and Jorge had already been denied once before. (**Fun fact: The gentleman who approved him today was the same person who denied him the visa 2 years ago!**)

Jorge told me about his interview, and he thinks the following tipped the odds in his favor (judging from the interviewer’s questions and reactions):

  • He’s married to an American working in Mexico. I always thought this would make him look like more of a risk, but apparently the interviewer seemed pleased to see my FM2 card and our marriage license. Last time he applied and was denied, we were not yet married.
  • Our recent trip to Brazil. Jorge mentioned we’d recently gotten a Brazilian visa and traveled, and the interviewer checked our Brazil visas and passport stamps. I think it looks good that he has traveled out of the country recently and returned.
  • Jorge graduates university in January. He’s all done with classes, but he has to be in Cancun in January to officially graduate, meaning he can’t stay in the US right now.

He did mention that he was just going to visit my family for Christmas. We’d debated downplaying the fact that he had family of sorts in the US as it makes him more of a risk, but in the end honesty is the best policy, right?

I already bought our tickets to fly home for Christmas. I’ve been waiting 5 years for Jorge to see where I’m from and how amazing my mom’s cooking is. I hope he’ll be able to put up with me, my 2 sisters, mom, grandma and 4 girl cousins… he’ll be “bendito entre mujeres”, as they say in Mexico. Can’t wait!

Thanks again to all my readers and Facebook friends for being so kind and supportive of us. Any expat here with a Mexican spouse/partner/significant other knows just how important these visits are. All of our friends have been so excited for us. Thank you.

And a Very Merry Christmas to the American Consulate!

I’m traveling to my hometown of Richmond, Virginia this Christmas to see family, and I’m so excited about it! I haven’t seen my family since last December, which is the longest I’ve ever gone without seeing them. While I love my life here in Cancun, it can get very hard being away from family (and with “family”, I include my mom’s cooking) for so long. I also haven’t been to Richmond in I think 3 or 4 years, and I really miss the city sometimes.

I’ve always dreamed of taking Jorge with me to Richmond and showing him around everything I grew up with (plus the man needs to try my mom’s cooking, obvs). When my parents were living in Charlotte a few years ago, he applied for a US tourist visa and was denied.

This year, a Mexican friend of ours (hey, Tomas!) who had already been denied a visa twice was able to get his. This gave us a new-found hope, and we’re going to try again for the tourist visa.

Jorge and I spent over an hour last night filling out his online application form (I may or may not have fallen asleep near the end, sorry Jorge) and today he’s going to pay for and make his appointment.

With all the illegal immigration into the US, I understand why the US government has to be so careful about who they let in. I just wish there was some way I could prove that all I want is a family Christmas with my husband… not to bring nuclear weapons into the country, evade taxes or participate in human trafficking. (They ask a surprising number of  questions on the application to make sure this is not the case.)

So anyway, keep us in your prayers and thoughts over the next few days as we try to sort this all out. My sister has already written a letter to Santa Claus.