Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Passport wars......

 6:43 am - Wednesday - February 8th - GNHS - 47° F, humidity 61%, wind 2 mph out of the northeast.....partly cloudy today with a forecast high of 72° F.  On this date in 2013 TLE and I were in Plant City, FL at the Parkesdale Farm Market having some of their world famous Strawberry Short Cake.........↴

After finally obtaining 'suitable' Passport photos at UPS on Monday I decided to dedicate an hour, or two Tuesday morning to submitting our Passport renewal applications online through the U.S. State Department website, which involved uploading the appropriate photo with each application......LMAO!  Occasionally what I call 'The Hockwald Way' rears its uncomely head turning a routine, simple task into a long, drawn out, knock down, drag out battle of the will and mind.

After turning on our HP printer/scanner/copier and connecting it to the WiFi I began the simple, routine task of scanning each of our photos in preparation for uploading them when I reached that point in each application where the 'UPLOAD PHOTO' button appears.  I quickly completed my application, then went to upload my picture, however, I immediately received, in BOLD CAP LETTERS......"THE PHOTO IS TOO COMPRESSED, UNCOMPRESS IT, THEN TRY AGAIN".  Seems simple enough right?   NOT!  The instruction indicated the picture needed to be at least 600 DPI (whatever that is), and no less than 1680 pixels (whatever that may be).  I did find settings in my scanner for those criteria, and changed them accordingly, then rescanned my photo, hit the "UPLOAD PHOTO" button, and the same, identical message again, and again, and again for the next 3 hours.  Finally I settled upon some settings (not the ones they suggested in BOLD CAP LETTERS) that worked, and my photo was accepted....ahhh....sweet victory!  Now I know what to do with TLE's least that is what I thought....what seemed obvious, right?

With a large smile upon my face, I submitted my Passport application with the now acceptable version of my photo, was advised by the State Department I had done so successfully, and then proceeded to do TLE's application.  I got back to that 'UPLOAD PHOTO' button pretty quickly, and began to upload TLE's picture using the same exact settings I had used for mine, but immediately got that dreadful message again, and again, and again for over two hours.  I tried every imaginable configuration of scanner settings I could imagine, and still got "THE PHOTO IS TOO COMPRESSED.....blah, blah, blah".  Finally, around 3 pm, it occurred to me that I have a Microsoft program on my computer named 'Paintbrush' in which you can resize a picture, and on a whim I uploaded TLE's picture into that program, and resized it upward (larger).  Once I had what I thought looked good I went to upload that picture to the State Department website, and it was immediately accepted....wait, what?  It was that simple?  Doh!  TLE and I laughed uncontrollably for about 5 minutes.....I was giddy beyond belief. The 'Passport Wars' were finished, and I had emerged, somewhat the worse for wear, victorious.

In hindsight I should have remembered the old adage...."Nothing is simple".....anytime I think something is going to be 'simple' it turns out to be as far from simple as one might imagine.  At least we will not have to worry about that for another 10!  By the way, it now costs $130 per passport application, and an additional $60 per application if you want it expedited.  Expedited means you will get your passport in 5-7 weeks, instead of the normal 8-11 weeks.  If you want a passport card (looks like a driver license) that will set you back an additional $30 per card.  

That's all I've got for you today.  I hope my misadventures have put a smile upon your face....thanks for stopping by!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.