It was a long slog back to Europe. Thanksgiving crowds filled the US airports, long queues at security and short chance of getting upgrades. The crowds thinned as I crossed the Atlantic, and a rare open seat next to me gave some room to stretch out and read.
The Christmas decorations are out at Schiphol, and it’s so much easier passing through Border Security with up-to-date IDs.
I’ve found a couple of local companies who might be able to give me a refresher for the KVT, and will engage with that after New Years. In the meantime, I’ve paid my money ad have my appointment with the UK authorities on Dec 19 for Tier 1 renewal.
A major concern in the UK was that I would have to go dual citizenship at the end of 5 years. But a friend pointed out a path to permanent residency that might also be an option. The Dutch are till taking a hard line on dual citizenship, but are (so far) easier on permanent residency if I pass the language tests.
In any case 2013 will be my year.
The winding path is almost as stop-go / twist-turn as my subsequent EasyJet flight.
- Wait at H-foyer (no seats) for a gate to post.
- Run for the stairs when H2 appears, down and around to the cavernous waiting area (no seats).
- Show a ticket; check the size and weight of my carry-on. Join the multitude (mostly young and / or cheap) crowding the doors.
- Admire the picture of the Beach (I prefer the overhead of the labyrinth garden at the other H-gate). Envy the man who paid extra for early boarding, who gets a seat and a newspaper.
- Rush into the cold winter night for the plane: I never take the rear entry option. It’s shorter boarding, longer getting off. Battle for an unassigned seat.
- Kick back and relax all the way to STN.
Hopefully the day comes when the immigration procedures are similarly behind me.