I got an e-mail from the Swedish Embassy. I’ve been accepted as a ‘Permanent resident’ on the basis of 14 years of marriage the my wife. Thank God. That hurdle jumped—But . . . (You know something’s coming don’t you? It’s too easy).
I live in Washington, the State – West Coast. About as far away as you can get. But . . . I can wait and be fingerprinted in Sweden. I don’t have to think about it. There’s a place where I can do it in the small town where we’ll be living.
I need the green card to open up a checking account – to be a real person. To legally exist. I think about the Tamils in Sri Lanka, who lived generations without papers of any kind. You can see how the Tamil Tigers were born, and you can see where the terrorist came from. Tamils could see they were going to be stuck on this small island without civil rights for lifetimes They were brought over by the English to build tea plantations and left on their own when the English left. It was called Ceylon back then. For generations Tamils had no civil rights – for decades. I interviewed two Tamil Tigers in Madras, some 30 years ago. I wrote something about it when I got back from there, maybe it will surface amidst all this moving stuff.
It’s interesting to have these feelings . . . to become an immigrant. Of course, I realize I’m experiencing this at a very providential level. Having a wife who speaks Swedish as her 1st language helps enormously, But still, there are some interesting feelings.
I seem to have some kind of inside ‘holding on,’ an almost primitive emotional gravity. I know this place, and become aware of an intense love of America – of my culture.
“I love my county, fear my government.”
A bumper sticker.