Stephanie Burgis
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Well, Multimap claimed it would take 1 hour and 5 minutes to reach our destination, AA Route Planner claimed 1 hour 15 minutes, and Googlemaps claimed 1 hour 25... We arrived in the outskirts of Liverpool this morning in just about an hour and a half and then spent the next full hour desperately lost, driving frantically through the one-way system in the city center, where roads are never marked until you've already made the turn (and can't get back)...

(Last time we went to Liverpool, by train, I thought many approving things about the city, how lovely it was to look down at the docks and see the water, how cool it was to recognize Beatles references, etc. This time I thought: a pox on their one-way roads! How can anyone drive here????)

But I arrived at my 11:15 appointment at the Liverpool Public Enquires Office just exactly on time, and the big news is: my application for indefinite UK residency was approved! Woohoo! We handed over our (gulp) £950, we spoke to three very pleasant and helpful people who glanced through my application and checked our carefully gathered package of bills, insurance letters, bank statements, etc (to prove that we really and truly do live together, honest), and about 2 hours after arrival, I had a shiny new visa attached to my US passport.

The next step, and tomorrow's task, is to phone up the Nationality directorate and find out if I can apply now for (dual) British citizenship or if I have to wait a year (and, oh lord, how much that application is going to cost)...

But for now: hooray! I get to stay! :) I am very, very relieved.

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