A big week for Boston

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Boston is really truly sports town. What a week for Bruins, Boston’s hockey team! I enjoyed watching the playoffs even though at times  I was very nervous but as the series went on I believed in them more and more. I am not here to write any comprehensive essay about it. It just that I am very happy and proud for them.

I guess it was destiny that I picked Boston when I came to the United States. :) My first year in the U.S. the Red Sox won the World Series after 86 years. In 2007 I got married and the Sox won again and now the Bruins won after 39 years!  Then there are Celtic which won 2008 and of course Patriots who won in 2004 and 2005.

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I grew up watching sports as my dad is a big sports fan. From all those championships hockey it the most close to me as hockey is really big in the Czech Republic. Then my husband is a real Bruins fan as he lived whole his life in Boston and I am living here for 7 years so Boston feels like second home to me. Plus two Czech players David Krejci and Tomas Kaberle play for Bruins. And I can’t forget the Bruins captain Zdeno Chara who is Slovakian as I am half Slovak after my father. So it was very exciting for me to watch the playoffs and cheer for the Bruins. Also thanks to the rest of the team with in front of couch Claude Julien and goalie Tim Thomas as the most valued player. There is no doubt that  without him it would be hard to win.

THANK YOU BRUINS I ENJOYED THE RIDE!!!!!!!

here are some highlights:

The Best of 2011 Playoffs

Locker Room Celebration

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Winter wonderland

Massachusetts and most of New England got real feel of winter this season. Since January it is snowing almost every week! I would say we have around 1 meter of snow. It looks great but it is hard to drive in it. And there is more coming on Saturday. As I don’t mind snow I hope this craziness will end soon or I will use all of my vacation to cover storm days. :)

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more photos in Winter wonderland album

After election thoughts

so presidential election in the U.S.A is over. THANKS GOD! It was too looooong. This was my first election I was witnessing and I learnt few things:

1. Never, never ever talk about politics with your relatives. NEVER EVER NEVER EVER EVER!!!!! Or at least be very careful when you don’t know who they prefer.

2. People in the U.S.A are very (aggressive) passionate about their choice. I felt kind of hurt when I said who I like and people were telling me that it is good that I can’t vote. (obviously they were endorsing the other person then I)

3. A lot of times I heard that people would move to another country if Obama or McCain win.

4. About California people saying no to same sex marriage. Today I heard discussion on a radio channel that over 90 percent of African-American voted no. Shouldn’t all people have the same rights? No matter what color you are, what religion, what gender you prefer?

5. And last thing which says a lot about this country and that anything is possible in the U.S. Joe the Plumber is a celebrity and writing a book and maybe a country singer!!!!! hahahahaha. He is even mentioned on Wikipedia! Unbelievable!

I am very happy about the new president and I hope he will bring the very needed change for America.

11/7/2008

Presidential election 2008

As the presidential election is getting closer and with all the craziness around it I was just curios who you might vote.
And for people who don’t live in the USA who do you think is better for America as president? I am sure there must be different views from inside and outside of the country.
I don’t consider myself a big fan of politics. I am an observer. This is still too new for me as I live here just for 4 and 1/2 years and got recently a green card but I try watch news and read newspapers.
What always surprises me is how much money they put into the election. It is millions and millions!!! And the media and compaign advertisments are sometimes too agresive. It almost seems they want to sell a product not to elect a president.
All elections are crazy, doesn’t matter where you live. At the end it is really hard to know who is better when you hear all the bad staff. Who knows how they gonna do once they are at the White House.

Green Card

YES! I CAN’T BELIEVE IT BUT IT IS TRUE.
ON FRIDAY JUNE 13, 2008 I RECEIVED A GREEN CARD!  THE PROCESS TOOK SEVEN AND HALF MONTHS SINCE I HAVE FILLED THE FORMS. SO FINALLY I CAN GET SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER AND HAVE A DRIVING LICENSE AND LIVE A NORMAL AMERICAN LIFE WITH CREDIT CARDS. :)))
THIS CARD IS ONLY FOR TWO YEARS. AFTER THAT I HAVE TO FILL ANOTHER FORMS AND GO AGAIN FOR AN INTERVIEW WITH THE IMMIGRATION SO THEY REALLY KNOW THAT MY MARRIAGE WASN’T FAKE. :)
BUT MOST OF ALL WHY I AM SO EXCITED IS THAT I AM ABLE TO TRAVEL!
I WAS PLANNING TO GO BACK TO MY COUNTRY IN AUGUST BUT BECAUSE I DIDN’T KNOW WHEN MY CARD WILL COME I AND DAVID CHANGED OUR PLANS AND WE WILL HAVE VACATION IN THE USA. SO I AM SORRY FOR ALL MY CZECH FRIENDS THAT I AM NOT COMING THIS YEAR. WE WILL TRY TO COME IN SPRING NEXT YEAR.
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moji mili cesti pratele,
tak vam s radosti oznamuji, ze jsem v patek 13. cervna 2008 konecne obdrzela zelenou kartu coz znamena, ze muzu cestovat. bohuzel ale nedorzim letos, protoze jsme uz s davidem zmenili plany, kdyz jsme nevedela, kdy mi prijde karta, a rozhodli jsme se mit dovolenou po americe. takze misto cech budeme brazdit san franciscem, yosemitama, king parkem a sequioa parkem. do cech snad dorazime pristi rok na jare.
tak se mejte hezky, zdravi jana.

Dealing with the U.S. system, part 3

The court:
In the part 2 I have wrote that my court is postponed until the end of May when I would have a green card. But I didn’t know one important thing. To get a green card I can’t have any open criminal case. But to close my case I need a MA driving license and the license I can get only if I have green card. :) You see, I am stuck. So my immigration lawyer told me you have to move your court hearing before April 1 and the case has to be closed no matter what. Even guilty would be good.
So I went again to the court. We told them what is happening. Fortunately the clerk was normal person. He smiled and said that I have been caught between two laws and he understands that I can’t do really anything so he DISMISSED my case and wished me a happy live in the U.S.!!!!!
Whoohooo!! Thanks God, there are still people with a common sense. That cheered me up a lot! One thing done.
The interview for the Green Card:
I must say that my interview was easy and went well! Thanks god I got a nice man. I saw some woman with bad mood and I was praying to not get them. :) I was lucky. The man was very nice, easy going and didn’t asked that many questions. He needed some documents that we have been living together as bank statement that we have a joint account. He asked us what day we have got married and on one picture he asked me who is there and I said David’s mom. He had one question on David and it was where we met. And that was it. :) We gave him my court case and he just looked at it quickly and put it in my file. So it went really easy.
So I am approved to get a green card. BUT! The only thing is (nothing is easy with me :)) that the FBI forget to check my name. So now the immigration resubmitted my name and I have to wait another month. Hopefully it will be that easy. My lawyer was scaring me that in same cases it took 6 months to a year to get the name check! I hope it is not going to happen to me. :)
I’ll keep you inform. :)

 

Dealing with the U.S. system, part 2.

The court:
On February 19th I went to the court because of my driving without Massachusetts driving license.
Nothing happened. They postponed it until May. But this is the last time they can do it. If I can’t show them my MA license the judge will have to decide if I am guilty or not.
One thing was funny. The judge asked me where I come from. So I said from Czech Republic. And he said that we have a good crystal.  I didn’t expect him to say that! :)  I was surprised. I thought that judge will be talking just about the case but probably even he realized that my case is so pathetic. :)
The immigration:
Almost a month ago I have got a work card permission to aloud me to work in the USA. I was sooo happy because with this card I could get a Social Security Number and that means I could get a Massachusetts driving license and I could show it at the court.
But they messed up my birthday. They wrote that I was born in 2007!!!!! So I called the immigration that there is a mistake on the card and the lady on the other end was saying something but I couldn’t understand her because she was talking too quickly and with some accent. So I asked her nicely if she can repeat it that I don’t understand. So she said exactly at the same speed. I told her again that I don’t understand and she said if I don’t understand that I need a translator to talk instead of me. So I told her back that I usually don’t have any problem to understand and that maybe she should try to talk more slowly or use other words to explain me what she is saying.
(I was horrified, surprised and mad together. I felt offended by her. I don’t know what she was thinking that what kind of people would be calling to immigration office. Hello lady! Of course mostly it will be immigrants whose English is second language.)
So after that she told me slowly and I understood. But what she said it didn’t make me happy at all. She said I would need to submit new papers, pay again and send the old card to show them it is wrong. They will examine my case, see if I filled the form wrong or if they did and then they would return my money or not.
All this would take another 40 to 45 days. You can imagine how I felt. That meant that I will not have it for the court. I called my lawyer and he told me not to worry that I should wait until I get a green card. Because when I get a green card I don’t need a work permission card anymore.
I have an interview scheduled for April 1, if that goes well I should have a green card soon. I hope nobody’s going to full me. :)

Winter in Boston

January 14, 2008
On Monday we had a snowstorm. I have never heard and seen thunder and lightning while snowing. It can happen only in New England! :)
But it left so beautiful scenery to watch. I took a little video and photos while driving my car so the quality isn’t really good but hopefully you can get the idea. I felt like I am in the mountains and not in the city.
            

Dealing with the U.S. system, part 1

I wanted to write about my honeymoon firstly but a lot of things have happened since we arrived. As you know my grandma died and then I had to deal with immigration, police and health insurance.
Immigration: 
I was in the U.S. legally as a tourist until the end of July then I wanted to change my status for fiancee visa. I filled the paperwork, paid money ($200), went for fingerprint ($80) and waited. After two months I got a letter from immigration where was written that I have filled the wrong application so my request was denied and that I am here illegally and I have to leave in 30 days. :)
They even didn’t consider that I was trying to do the right thing. I hired a lawyer and he told me that I even didn’t have to apply for fiancee visa. I could just overstay that it is OK when I am married now. So I lost $280 dollars and I have to go again for fingerprints even I already went. So now I am applying for green card. You need to bring Birth Certificates for both, Passport  and I-94 Card, Marriage Certificate, 6 passport photos, Tax returns for the last three years for David, any other evidence showing bona fides of the marriage.
And if you want to know how much it all cost here you go:
$2000 for the lawyer + fees for the immigration forms I-130 -$355.00, I-485 – $930.00, I-765 – $340.00, Fingerprint Fee-$80.00
It is everything sent. Now I have to wait for the respond from immigration and wait when they going to invite us for consultation to find out if it is fake marriage or not.
Police:
What happened. On one crazy rotary in Boston suburb Policemen stopped me.
That was the first time in the U.S. I didn’t have any idea why. I was sure I did everything right. So I gave him all the things he needed. He returned after 15 minutes telling me that I can’t drive my car anymore.
Whaaatttttt????
And he told that I can’t own car longer then one year with International driving license. After one year I have to get MA driving license. But I can’t get MA license because I don’t have SSN. And SSN I will get after I get a green card. So I asked him what should I do now when I am waiting for the immigration. He said that I should firstly register the car on somebody’s else name as my husband. And if I wouldn’t go on RED light he would never stopped me and he would never found about it.
I was so surprised when he said I went on red when I was sure I was not! But it didn’t make any sense to argue with him. He even told me he could arrest me and tow my car but he is not going to do it but somebody else has to come and drive my car. After that he gave me a ticket where was written CA which means criminal application and I have to go to court. He said if I explain my situation them they will understand. Well, we will see.
So I gave my car to David as a gift in the family and registered on his name. Ridiculous is that two weeks ago I went for inspection but because we have changed the plates I had to go to inspect my car again! I still shouldn’t be driving my car because I have International License. After one year I suppose to leave the country even if just for few days. After that I can be driving for another year but in my case I can’t leave the country because of the immigration.  So I am in a vicious circle.
I go to the court in December 10. I’ll see what is going to happen.
Health Insurance in the U.S. is something unbelievable. I have never seen so difficult system. So many types of insurance then when you register you have to do so many things. Oh gosh, I love my country. :)
I know I know it is just a lot of new things for me and at the same time. I don’t want to even think about taxes. That’s going to be another big headache for me. :)
I will let you know how everything ended up. :)