Randy McCarten

Randy McCarten

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I Just Want to Go To Canada!

Our son goes to college in Buffalo.  We have to drop him off at the end of the month so we were thinking "why don't we make a mini vacation out of it?"   We could go to the Canadian side of the falls and see what is up there for a couple days.   None of us have passports so we thought it would be a good time to get them.

We filled out the forms went to the exit 8 post office.  They were really helpful, took the pictures and answered out questions.  Then it happened!!!

The guy asked me if I misspelled my mother's madden name on the form.  I said no and then he showed me my birth certificate.  My Mom's madden name is spelled wrong on it!  l was born in Illinois and I got a copy of my birth real certificate about 20 years ago.  My parents had originally given me my "birth certificate" when I left home.  At the time I thought it was real but it turned out to be some commemorative thing issued by the hospital with my foot prints on it.   I'm child number 5 so no one even filled it out it out all the way!   Nice foot print though don't you think?

I never noticed that my Mom's name was spelled wrong on the "real" birth certificate...I mean it's an official government document right?  I called the county clerk who issued it.  They said something like "Oh I'm not surprised they were all put in manually from old records.  Order the "long" birth certificate.  It's correct on there."

Guess what?  I ordered that and it arrived yesterday.  And it's still wrong! I called the state of Illinois.  They said we need a copy of your mother's birth certificate.  Like I'm going to have that.  I never even had my own.  I explained that I live in NY and that my Mom passed away 5 years ago.  They said well you can send her death certificate or her marriage license!  Like I'm going to call my 90 year old Dad and ask him to look around for it.  Next option?  A court order!?!   All this because someone didn't enter the correct information decades ago.

Then I starting thinking...this is just Karma.  It's my fault because I am one of the world's worst spellers.  

The guy at the post office sent in my passport application as is and said we'll see what happens.  I suspect it's $150 in futility.  I do have an enhanced license.  I'm told that will still work but I'm skeptical.  If I do get across the boarder and can't get back in well...I hope the Molson is cold.  The other karma thing that may come back to bite me?  Winter is my very least favorite season...by far.  I'm pretty sure Canada is 3 seasons of Winter and one that resembles Spring.

Any suggestions?  Email me...or the state of Illinois.  Or just tell me that the Falls look the same from the Canadian side as they do from the American side.   :)

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