Trip 39 / Entry 4

September 17-20, Charlotte, Milan and Zurich

Three Nightmare Vignettes 



She said, “I’m sorry you cannot fly on this passport until it is updated?” Puzzled, I replied, “What, what?” I didn’t think I heard her right. “But it is a valid passport. It’s good until January 20th.” “Yes,” she returned, “But it must be valid for three months after you return.”

“Who in the universe would know that rule,” I asked. Jeanette was sympathetic and said, “God, bless America.” Then I wanted to know if I could change my ticket to a valid return date (October 20) to which she said, “You bought this through Expedia, you’ll have to make the change through them and it will cost you an arm and a leg.” This, of course, would mean going back home and missing my flight. Suddenly I thought, “I have a valid Canadian passport, could I use it?” She said, “I don’t know why not.” You can’t fly out on your US passport but you can return on it.”

Maybe you should all pray about this or I may be celebrating Natale in Italy this year.




Last night on the way home from pizza, two people came up suspiciously. I shooed them away but this morning when I got out of bed and put on my pants, I felt my wallet pocket was slightly lighter. This freaked me out! I didn’t have much in the wallet – 300 Euro since I had just gone to a cash machine – but I did have all of my ATM cards and credit cards!!! Well, after looking all over the room, I was sure the wallet had been lifted, In a cold sweat I called and cancelled everything which took an hour (I love Skype when it works). After doing all of this and then making other arrangements for money, I took a shower and after doing so, I put on another pair of look-alike jeans. Guess what? You know, don’t you? There was the wallet with everything in it so my record holds firm, 39 visits to Europe without a loss. Nevertheless, trying to back up the cancellations so that i can have access to money is an utter nightmare and once you have done it, it is a done deal! Anyhow, I will figure it all out and as they say, (I don’t know who “they” is) “Better to be safe than sorry.” 



Now a new development of interest. I come to Swiss Passport Control and the lady here thumbs my pages and says, “Where will you go from here?” I proudly listed off the countries. She went on, “There is no place to stamp. I cannot allow you to enter.” I pulled out the Canadian passport that was clean as a whistle. “Oh!” She said, “That will do.” CLICK. Away I went.

One comment on “Trip 39 / Entry 4

  1. Ann Hinrichs says:

    Unreal! You have been enduring some amazing obstacles Tony. Now, you’re so calm about it…is it good that you are “getting used to” challenges like this? 🙂 Always praying for you brother each day.

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