After almost six months of waiting, I received this letter in the mail saying that I most certainly have a Luxembourg ancestor and thus am eligible for reclamation of citizenship under Article 29.
I spent my winter break at home in Illinois, so while in the Land of Lincoln, I was hoping it might come in the mail … and it sure did.
After two flights, one from Chicago to Atlanta and the other from Atlanta to D.C., I walked through the door of my apartment in Northeast D.C. and greeted my girlfriend Sarah with the adequate amount of kisses. Shortly thereafter, I asked about the mail situation, and Sarah showed me the measly pile of post with my name on it. I had only three pieces of mail, excluding my weekly The Economist, sent to me during the almost two weeks I was away from the nation’s capital: a pay stub, an offer from Bank of America for another credit card and my brand-spanking new D.C. driver’s license, the photo of which looks like I’m under the influence of hallucinogenic drugs. But sadly, there was no envelope from the Ministry of Justice.
Oh well. Maybe tomorrow? Or next week? Or next month? Who knows …
After such a long day of traveling, and the disappointment of no news from Luxembourg in my mailbox, I decided to go the bathroom. I walked in, went to the bathroom and walked out.
For the next few hours, I hung out with Sarah, as well as my two cats, whom we had left for the first extended amount of time ever. After filling my bladder once more with a pot of coffee and several glasses of water, it came upon me that I needed to return to the toilet and relieve myself once more. However, this time, I noticed something taped to the mirror that I hadn’t spotted on my first trip to the bathroom.
Yes, I neglected to wash my hands during my first trip to the bathroom, which is the reason why I did not look directly into the mirror. But the second time I went to the bathroom I did wash my hands, and that taped something on the mirror of the bathroom was a large envelope from the Luxembourg Ministry of Justice.
My heart plunged into my stomach. I yelled at Sarah, who had obviously put it there as a joke, and she laughed. I rushed out of the bathroom, this time with hands cleaned and dried, so as not to destroy the integrity of the envelope and its contents, and, with the palpable excitement of a child ripping open his presents on Christmas morning, I opened the envelope. In the few seconds between opening the envelope and pulling out the sheets of paper, I told myself: “What if this is a message saying that I need to submit more documents, or, even worse, that I do not qualify for citizenship under the reclamation process?”
But when I pulled out the papers, and saw the first sheet, I didn’t have to read the letter — I couldn’t, anyway, because I don’t read, write or speak in French — to know that this was the thing for which I had been impatiently waiting.
On the top of the document it read: “Certificat.”
“Yes,” I thought. “This is it.”
I thrust the certificate into Sarah’s hands for her to read, just to make sure the title wasn’t misleading. And sure enough, as she translated the document aloud, I found out that I can officially head on down to the Grand Duchy — with a few other documents I’ll talk about in a later post if you haven’t already heard about them — and become a citizen of Luxembourg.
This “certificat” also means I won’t be neglecting the blog anymore, and I really mean it this time. I will write about my personal experiences, now that I have personal experiences about which to write. I can also talk about planning my trip to Luxembourg, as well as some other countries I’d like to tour, some of which, including the United Kingdom, are home to friends and family.
The most hilarious thing about this project is that when I become a citizen of Luxembourg and the European Union, it will be the first time that I’ve ever been to Europe.
One last note: Congratulations to Wes, another kick-ass Midwesterner of Luxembourg descent, who also received his “certificat” in the mail this week.
One last last note: This is my 100th post!