Sunday, June 15, 2008

On becoming an American citizen

Did you know that there are 27 Amendments to the US Constitution, four of which (the 15th, 19th, 24th and 26th) have to do with voting rights? And can you name the original 13 states? These are some of the answers to about 100 civics questions that I am drilling into my head through daily repetition, for a July 1 date with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS). It will hopefully be my final interview on the long path to becoming a US citizen through naturalization.

I am looking forward to becoming a US citizen as much as I have looked forward to anything in my life. Hopefully there won’t be too much of a delay between the final interview and the official swearing in ceremony, but who knows. I’ve waited 16 months already since first filing the N-400 application form. Another few weeks or even months won’t kill me although I am getting rather anxious. Even so, I won’t get too excited about it until someone tells me where and when to show up to raise my right hand and to swear the oath of allegiance for the very first time.

On the morning of that day, I will wake up with anticipation riding high in my chest. Donning my best suit and tie, I will leave for the ceremony a South African, which I have been for these last 56 years. Without as much as changing my shirt, I will come home an American, changed forever. I can hardly wait.

Last week’s running

It’s been another great week of running: 41 miles total, first time over 40 miles since several weeks before my ‘boston-marathon-which-never-happened’.

  • Very slow 6 miles on Sunday, Terry Hershey Trail along Buffalo Bayou
  • 8 miles easy along Terry Hershey Trail on Monday
  • 4.5 miles on Tuesday including 2 miles @ 7:15 pace at Memorial High School track
  • 4.5 miles on Wednesday afternoon in 100F+ in Austin Texas, running along the gravel trail west from Congress Street bridge, towards Barton Springs and Zilker Park. Lots of people, lots of dogs, fun!
  • 5 miles on the same trail in Austin, this time early morning on Thursday. Then made it two-a-day with 4 miles in celebration of Steve Shepard’s 30,000 running career milestone.
  • Scheduled rest day on Friday
  • 9 miles total at 8:34 average pace, with Steve Shepard in Cullen Park at 06:30a on Saturday. Very nice run.

I’m excited because one of the neighbor’s kids, a young guy in his 20’s, will be running with me tomorrow morning. He is also training for the Houston Half Marathon in January 2009.


Steeeve said...

Wow, congratulations in anticipation of becoming a Yank, that's very exciting!

Great having you and Kathleen out Thursday, didn't realize it was your second run of the day.

Oh, and that was Mark England with us Saturday morning, recent transplant from Richmond VA and a very strong runner.

Vegan_Noodle said...

Good luck with the exam! I would have to think pretty hard to remember the first 13 states...