We had a lovely family outing on Saturday....to get our US visa photos taken.
Now, these visa photographs are not the same as just any old common or garden UK passport photo, which you could get from a booth or your local post office. Oh no, why would you think that? These are SPECIAL photos, of a completely different size and specification. And you can get them taken at, ooh, about three places in the whole of London (Lord only knows what you do if you live outside London). There was nowhere south of the river as far as I could tell from Google, so we ventured 'oop north' from Nappy Valley, taking the Littleboys for an excursion on the Tube, which luckily they love, followed by a pizza lunch.
The studio had advertised itself as being open at 10am, but we got there to find it looking dark and very shut up at 10.30. There were several other people standing there looking irritated. Eventually a man turned up and starting turning lights on. He informed us that it would be open at 11. After a wander around Covent Garden, we returned to find it STILL closed and the people who had been waiting since 10 slowly giving up and going away. By this point Littleboy 1 needed a wee, and Littleboy 2 was desperate to get out of his pram and run around. When the proprietor did turn up, he was very apologetic and even gave us a discount, but the boys by this time were restless and bored.
Meeting the requirements was a lengthy process, one that involved many instructions that small boys are seemingly incapable of following. For example, closing their mouth; not smiling, touching their face, biting their sleeve, pouting, screwing their eyes up or simply looking the wrong way.
Littleboy 1 was vaguely keen to play the game, being quite into posing for the camera. But Littleboy 2 was impossible. Each shot had something slightly wrong with it; his hair was in his eyes; his mouth was open; the angle of his face was slightly wrong. (All highly suspicious indications, I am sure, of a two year old trying to enter a country illegally and malevolently.)
Eventually the deed was done and we scuttled back across the river to the South Bank, where we had lunch. "They technically cannot reject them," I was assured (about the photographs, not the Littleboys).
I'll believe it when I see it. Meanwhile, I am just thankful the boys don't have to come to the Embassy with us for the 'interview' part of the process....