Saturday, 20 August 2011
Long overdue update!!!!!!!
SO MUCH has happened in the last 5 weeks (tomorrow) since Beau was born!!!!!! It's been a rollercoaster of experiences and moments, all part of the rich tapestry of our time in Delhi.
Firstly, huge congratulations to Mark and Kerry on the birth of their beautiful baby girl Cailyn, we're really hoping we get to meet up together with Beau soon! And we really hope Sam and Phil are having a fabulous time back home with Ruby and Zoe!!!
A few days after Beau's birth we received the most lovely, generous parcel of gifts sent from Edward, Paul, Vivian, Aria and Sydney (Faith to Vishwas) and here is Beau with a fabulous selection (clearly enjoying his new outfit!!!) Such a kind and lovely thought, we were so touched and grateful.
A few day's after Beau's birth, we started the process of citizenship application. It's impossible to put into words the frustration of this process. When we did our research on surrogacy, we was perfectly aware that for Brits, no matter what country they work with, the citizenship application is a red-tape-bureaucracy-filled headache. When we sent the MN1 citizenship application from the British High Commission, it has to be sent to the UK via the diplomatic postal service. This only leaves and arrives 2 days a week from/to Delhi, and can take up to 2 weeks for the package to arrive at it's intended destination. So it doesn't take a genius to work out that when the citizenship certificate is issued, a month has been wasted sending the application and waiting for the certificate to arrive, That doesn't even begin to include the time taken to process the application!!!!!!!
When we planned our time in Delhi, we studied closely the British High Commission website on the processes involved in applying for UK citizenship from New Delhi. It strongly suggests 6 weeks (ish minimum) to get the certificate and another 4 weeks to get the passport, then 1-15 days to get the FRRO exit via, so we planned 12 weeks in India.
When we called the Home Office in the UK who process the applications, they say 'Applications take 3 to 6 months', yes you heard that correctly, MONTHS!!!!!!!!! Since sending our application 4 weeks ago, we have only just received an application reference number as it took this long for the application to reach the UK via snail-mail, and get inputed onto their computer system. The next stage is for it to wait in a queue to be allocated a case worker who will assess the application. However, with our application being in the same pile as the 800 applications a day for UK citizenship, we can be assured that this will take weeks to be looked at.
So in the mean time, the wait and worry continues... but we remain hopeful that our application lands in the hands of someone who realizes we need to return to our lives and work as quickly as possible. Hopefully in a week or 2 we might be lucky enough to have a case worker allocated, so we will keep you posted!!!!
A great friend from Hong Kong came to Delhi to visit us an see Beau last week, so we took this as an opportunity to travel to Jaipur for some culture and a change of scenery. We LOVED Jaipur!!!!!!! And Jaipur seemed to love Beau, he got so much attention, (all good I'm glad to say).
Jaipur is such a lovely city full of contradictions, hectic but charming, gritty but extremely pretty, definitely one of the most fascinating and rewarding trips we've been on and so wonderful that it was part of our India Odyssey.
(Love this pic of a dog and a monkey haha!)
Adam recently became victim to some form of stomach bug and ended up having a whole day in hospital on various drips. After 2 or 3 days he was right as rain again!
However hard our application process might be, we are still very much enjoying our time in India. We find that Delhi is a city where, although the pleasures are not immediately obvious, the city can take you pleasantly by surprise, whether it's the genuine warmth of it's people, a wonderful meal, people becoming really friendly when you return to the same shops or restaurants, some great shopping (which might not be immediately obvious, but great when you finally hunt it down!) and as crazy and chaotic it's reputation might be, we find it can be surprisingly relaxing. For us, Delhi was not love at first sight, it's a place that grabs your heart over time, and like a great friendship just gets better and stronger with time.
Hoping to meet up with Doug and Chad very soon!!!!!!!!