I am headed back to London the first weekend of November, but this time...well, this time I have no worries. Because. I received my permesso di soggiorno!!! (Stay permit)
I started this process back in June of 2009. I was advised to wait until I arrived in Rome to apply for my work visa. So, I did. And I waited...and waited...and waited. In the meantime, I was "prohibited" from entering the UK for 6 months...went to Sofia, Bulgaria...and continued to wait for the Italian government to process my paperwork. Finally, I received notice this past March that my visa application had been "set aside" for bureaucratic reasons. So, I returned home for four months and began the visa process all over again, but from the States this time. I received my visa in August, returned to Rome at the end of the month, applied for my permesso within 8 business days, reported for fingerprinting 3 weeks later, and received my permesso 3 weeks after that. Alleluia!
I am so thankful for it and for the Lord's provision during my waiting period. I know I wasn't always patient--and not always quiet about my impatience--but in the end it all worked out.
So, to mark the occasion, I am returning to London for a weekend with some students. I have everything in order this time England---so watch out!