The Visa – Sunday/Monday – Day 150/151

December 26, 2012

Today was not pleasant at all. At 5AM I woke up with a jolt. *CRACK* *SMASH*, my head rolled backwards and my stomach dropped as the sound of splintering wood hit my hears temporarily disorienting me. The bed frame was in pieces on the floor and I was sure the landlord would not be happy.

Most of the day was spent in the house waiting for the landlord to show up as he said he would and soon I was out on the street, $150 USD out of pocket.

That’s all I’ll say about Sunday.

Monday morning I was up in the freezing Montreal cold at 5AM to get to rural Canada to the     US Consulate Passport Processing Center. A train to the end of the line, bus and cab later I was outside the doors at a godforsaken hour knocking madly, giving those inside no peace till after around ten minutes they opened the door to ask me what I wanted.  I explained my situation and after a number of tense minutes of bargaining they agreed to give me my passport back, complete with new F1 visa inside.

From there it was a race back to the bus station… could I make it by 9AM when the bus was leaving? Back with a cab, a bus, a tense train ride and a sprint through a kilometer long corridor to make it to the bus station at 8:55.

Much of the day from that point was spent on a bus, except for a brief and delightful coffee break midway at which point I purchased a pain au chocolat and a plain bagel that were devoured with a deep intensity.

Arriving in NYC at ~5:30PM I raced to the Bloomberg Building where a bunch of Glee Alums where rehearsing for singing carols at Rockefeller Plaza in the office of one Mark Glassman. Mark himself is particularly notable for two reasons, the first of these being his youthful demeanour and spirited manner, but next and more importantly he has been the playwright for the Glee Spring Show for twelve years! He is reaching C Erik. Nordgren levels of commitment! Getting inside involved a complex process including taking a surreptitious photo of me when I was least expecting it with a camera embedded in the wall.

Bloomberg ID


The internals of the Bloomberg building were fantastic, ornate, yet somehow still office-like. A big highlight of the visit inside was the snack kitchen, accessible in a central location to all employees. Inside were mounds of free foods of all descriptions and even on Christmas Eve it was fully stocked. Snack we did. Next we rehearsed for a while and I as a newman was mentored a little by some of the older alums. Also very thoroughly convinced to join Voice of Gotham if ever I was in town for long enough.

From there we went to Rockefeller Plaza itself and sung to the crowd in pouring rain mixed with ice and snow for a good half hour. During this period our music soaked together making page turns impossible and my fingers froze solid! A highlight of the night was taking the Baritone solo in Winter Song, as I was the only Baritone around!

Freezing cold, I made my way back to my cousin’s once-removed and settled into the warmth for a nights sleep in a bed!




Monday/Tuesday – Day 56/57

September 21, 2012

Monday was a fairly standard ‘Yom-Tov’ (festival, literally ‘good day’). The morning was spent in service in Sarah’s family shule (synagogue) and I was privileged enough to be given a big honor in the service, I was called to the Torah first out of everyone!

Lunch was again, quieter, with just me, a friend of Zack’s, and the rest of the family. However, this was all in preparation for another huge dinner! That night Robin was hosting Steven’s side of the family, very different characters from hers. Of note was Uncle Terry (Trevor? I’m not sure the name is correct.) who was unmarried and earning well, spending his gains on travelling around the world. He told me of his trips around Eastern Europe and even mentioned his upcoming travels to Iran!

Though dinner went late, Sarah and I stayed up again as we knew that we wouldn’t be seeing too much of each other however, eventually we needed to retire.

The next morning was much the same as the previous, just this time I had become more accustomed to the practices and musical tunes of Sarah’s synagogue, which improved the experience.

Finally we had a quiet meal! Just me and the family eating some leftovers; delicious! The afternoon Sarah and I just chilled, knowing we didn’t have too long left. Soon it was time to pack my bags, take a photo of Sarah and I, then back to thus bus station.


© 2012-2024 Shaanan Cohney