Monday, 14 February 2011

Embassy Excitement...

Well, since I last posted I am definitely one step closer to the land of the free, on Friday was the day of the American Embassy. For the benefit of future CRPs I will explain what happened, as I know that it is something a lot of us get very nervous about, and there was really no need at all!

So first came the horrific form, my two tips are, firstly to take note of the reference number, because it logs you out all the time and then secondly to keep on saving- for the same reason. The stuff it asks you isn't too difficult and as long as you have the yummy info to hand (and in my case an amazing boy on the end of the phone). Then print everything off, check a hundred times you have everything you need and sorted. 

On the embassy day a group of us had booked so we would be together, which was nice as it meant having someone to chat to in between the waiting. We all arrived really early, in fact I arrived at 7.30 and they were already letting people in. You have to queue up outside and they check you have your documents and that you have no electricals (they are unbelievably strict on this), then you proceed to security, which is like an airport system, they scan your bag and you walk through a scanner yourself, then once this is complete you walk round to the Visa entrance. They give you a sticker with your number on and then you basically hang around waiting until you are called to the first lot of windows, where they check all your paperwork and scan your finger prints (all fingers and thumbs). Then its back down to the waiting area to wait for your interview. All four of us on the day were asked different questions, so as long as you are calm, speak clearly and know where you are going you will be fine. My man was extremely friendly and the interview lasted less than 5 minutes. You are then told if you are successful (we all were- phew) and you go and pay for your passport to be couriered back to you. Take card as cash was not allowed at all. So now all I am waiting for is the return of the passport! Fingers crossed. 

Then for the rest of the morning, we were in and out so quickly, the four of us had a bite to eat and then went to Harrods, which was hilarious and then went and just had a chat in a bar. It was so so nice getting to know some of the other March gang, which has made the whole thing much less nerve-wracking. 

In the evening I went to see The Wizard of Oz with a very good friend, it was great, although we thought slightly under rehearsed (it was their first week), give it six months and it will be amazing. So that was Visa day!

Then on Saturday I went for my contact lenses fitting, as I am very worried Disney will not like my glasses and really don't want to be blind at work! So hopefully that will all work out as that is one more thing crossed off the list. Then picked up some bits in town that I know I will need for Disney to hopefully save on last minute panic buying! Sunday me and Mumma B went to see my cousin and his wife, felt strange knowing I won't be able to see them for a year, but I have asked them to download skype so they can chat away to me, plus they know what it is like living abroad for a long period of time, so I know they will always be there at the end of email if I need a pep talk. 

An that is all really, I still need to sort out insurance, student loan stuff, tax stuff, saying goodbye to all of my friends and buy some last bits. I won't finish work until the end of February (and fly on the 7th March), so just trying to earn as much as I can before then alongside lots of sorting. 

Three weeks today I shall be (hopefully) on board a plane heading over to Florida! It has come so so quick. Am still amazingly nervous, but feeling more confident and excited about the whole thing. Over and out!

Saturday, 5 February 2011

A flying start...

Well, one very exciting thing has happened since I last blogged. I have booked my plane seat! Yes sir, I shall be sitting in seat 62D- circa right near the back of the plane. The whole seat booking experience was hilarious, as AJ and I first couldn't log on, then couldn't work out how which number was booking number, which was this, which was that, much giggles, slight panic... and then.... there were only two lots of four seats together left.

I literally couldn't believe it, I was convinced that we would be stuck for choice, but not the case! So then we had to quickly ring Jenny and Leanne and be like arrghhhhh. And then we were all sorted and in a row, or so we thought.

Turns out instead of 62 E, Aj cleverly booked himself into 63E, so then repeat panic, chaos and giggles until it was sorted! I know some will think this is such an insignificant event I really shouldn't even blog about it, but it just confirms that I have some really awesome people to fly with and that we have already had some banter, which is always good. 

So, thats it for now! 29 days and counting...

Thursday, 3 February 2011

All falling into place...

32 days to go....

So lots of technical bits and pieces have come together since I last posted.

First and foremost, I am officially not a threat to children! And have my CRB check to prove it. Such a relief for it to arrive to be honest as I was convinced I had filled the form out wrong, so that it good news.

I have also booked my embassy appointment, which is on Friday 11th February at.... 8am, so that is going to be an early morning and a half. I also have to fill out a horrific form before then, so that shall be a task for early next week once I have sorted out a photo. I am hoping and praying that I don't do anything wrong, because I really don't want to have to pay for the embassy appointment twice!

I have emailed the Disney International team and the HRC with my flight details and visa appointment, which makes it all seem very very real. 

I have had some real ups and downs recently, the idea of actually going away for a year is terrifying and it all seems to be coming up so so fast. I am especially worried about my Mum, I think she is acting much much braver than she feels. However, I have had some amazing pep talks from lots of people and a very special boy in Columbia explained that being nervous doesn't mean you have made the wrong decision, which made me feel so much better. Plus it is nice to have advice from someone who has done it and accepts the nerves and ups and downs, rather than everyone just saying that its 'going to be amazing'. Which although is exciting, actually makes me much much more nervous!

In other news I really need to start making a proper packing list, as the idea of trying to fit my life for a year into a suitcase that has to weigh less than 23kg currently feels like a bit of a logistical nightmare. Especially coming from the girl that had a van load of stuff when leaving university, so I am just going to have to be brutal methinks! 

I am flying with three other CRPers, and we have a hotel sorted for the first night so now all we need to do is sort out seats to ensure that we all get to sit together on the plane. 

So that's the update really, it looks like the coming month will be one of goodbyes and slight chaos and then hopefully all will go just fine with the flight on the 7th! 

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

The adventure begins...

So here it is... my Disney blog. I wasn't sure I wanted to do one of these to be honest, but it seems like the best way for friends, and of course my Mum to keep up to date with all my adventures the other side of the pond in Florida.

So this is it. I am going to go and work in Epcot, in the UK Pavilion, Walt Disney World. I applied way back in July, and after four months of waiting and three interviews I was given a start date for the 8th March 2011.

Unlike many other Disney people I have met along the way, I was nowhere near as enthusiastic about this at the beginning, feeling much much more nerves than excitement since my start date. However, with some sound advice since November, and taking careers and life advice from the film 'Post-grad', I have decided this is something I really want to do, so flights booked last week I am now feeling the excitement as well as the nerves- which is awesome! I have two (maybe three) flight buddies for the nine and a half hour flight (oh good god) on the 7th March- I think we are literally going out early to buy bedding (Disney literally gives you a bed) and get one nights sleep before the mayhem commences. 

I have so so so much to do before then, Visas, insurance, other general organization and of course earn some more money to pay for the first few weeks out there, and to act as a cushion incase something doesn't go quite to plan. But all this doesn't seem anywhere near as daunting when you have the frankly amazing Hannah from Yummy Jobs, every step of the way. 

Much as I am going to miss some amazing people here in the UK, and literally do not know how on earth I will cope without Mummy Bassam, I really feel for the first time ever I am ready to take this leap (which sounds so mega cheesy). I know there will be times when I am tired, grumpy and upset, but there were these times in my last amazing job. I am just hoping I am lucky enough to meet some fabulous people like I did then! My other reservations centered around not having a 'proper' job and lots of economics based reasons, but my real fear was missing people- however a very wise presidential specimen said that those that mattered would be here when I returned and those that forgot were simply not worth it in the long run. Other cons on my pro con list (Rory Gilmore eat your heart out) included 'missing the royal wedding' and 'it doesn't snow in Florida'- so I aim to create some kind of snow and get my mum to do a live link up (bless her, she doesn't know yet) to Will and Kate! Problems solved. I think this shows though, the ridiculously long time I have taken to make a decision- fingers crossed I have made the right one! 

So yes, that's it. I am taking a gamble, following my heart not my head, and hoping, in all honesty that this all turns out ok!