Trip Start Oct 04, 2008
67Trip End Nov 04, 2008
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John contacted me yesterday and told me that Sudanese visas take about 2 months to be issued and they need your passport for those months. Why wasn't this picked up before ? Anyway, I'm out of the country soon and back on August 3rd. We leave on October 3rd, exactly 2 months later. There are of course other visas to apply for, Ethiopia, Syria, Jordan, Egypt. My other issue is that my current passport has almost run out of visa space and it also has an Israeli stamp in it. I'm going to need a new one before I can send it off to the Sudanese Embassy, so that's well under the standard 2 months.
After a morning of frantic phone calls to the Sudanese Embassy and the passport office, it seems that they only need a copy of the passport for the 2 months (we can apply for the others within those 2 months then) and I need to visit Newport passport office in person on Wednesday. At least then we can apply for the visa before I head off on holiday in 2 weeks. I could do without a wasted day and extra expense though for something that could have been avoided if it had been picked up on a month or two back.
Last week I was given 2 good leads of companies who were keen to sponsor us for large amounts. One now seems to have been reduced to possibly one panel on the back, the other, despite 2 e-mails and 2 phone calls just hasn't got back to me. I don't know if I should carry on chasing or give that one up. E-mails to several local companies have gone unanswered.
I've texted most of the bus crew to update them with the urgent visa application. A few got back to me, most just ignored it as usual. I've sent messages to various members to see how they are progressing, again little response. I'm really getting the impression that I have been working my knackers off for the last 6 months whilst others haven't even got in to first gear yet. The more I do, the more it seems needs doing and time is running out fast.
So, those were my rest days. 4 straight early shifts, a day trip to Newport and another early shift then nights. Great. I'm frazzled before I've begun.
A hugely frustrating and depressing two days. I'm thinking that if things don't change soon I may have to have a re-think of when we leave. 10 weeks just won't be enough time for me to do everything needed to get done and I'm fed up with chasing others, asking them, chivvying them and getting little response in return.
Black days indeed....