I'll go on with the naturalization posts as we move through the process. Getting the translations all done was a major milestone. We had our marriage certificate translated into French by a sworn translator four years ago, because we wanted to be sure that our U.S. marriage would be recognized by France. I don't think we need to have anything else translated.
Our next task is to write out a list of all the places we have ever lived in our lives. Addresses is what they say they want. I hate to think how many addresses I've had over the past 67 years. I've lived in North Carolina (two cities), Illinois (four cities), Normandy, Paris, the Paris suburb of Asnières, Arlington VA, Washington DC, San Francisco, Sunnyvale CA, and now in this village just outside Saint-Aignan in the Loire Valley.
To complicate matters, when I lived in Illinois I was a graduate student at the University of Illinois. I lived in a series of furnished apartments, and my residency in Illinois was interrupted by several years as a student and teacher in France, and by two short stints as a teacher in Bloomington IL. Later, when Walt and I moved to San Francisco, we lived in four different apartments the first five years we were there, and then in two different houses over the last 12 years we spent there. Luckily, Walt is very organized and he has all those addresses in his computer.
Meanwhile, I'm getting ready to fly back to the U.S. for my annual visit. I say "annual" because it's been a year since my last trip. The year before that, I went to the States three times. There were many terrorist attacks during that year, including two very disturbing and deadly ones in Paris. All that made me an even more nervous flyer than I ever was before, and I've actually never enjoyed air travel. That said, I've flown across the Atlantic Ocean more than 80 times since 1969.
This time, I've found a non-stop flight from Paris to Raleigh-Durham. That's new and will be so much easier, because I won't have to change planes in Atlanta as I did the last three times I made the trip. Sometimes that non-direct route means I have to hang around in the Atlanta airport for as long as 4 hours after spending 8 or 10 hours on an airplane and being completely jet-lagged. Then I have a second flight and I arrive on the Carolina coast at nearly midnight.
This time I'll land at the Raleigh-Durham airport at 2:30 p.m., rent a car, and drive down to the coast. It's a three-hour drive. Before flying out, I'll travel by train from Tours to CDG airport and spend a night in a hotel there. My flight leaves too early for me to risk driving or taking the train to the airport the same day. So I'll be traveling for close to 40 hours before I get to my destination. It's not an easy trip. But I'll enjoy the visit once I get there.