The Passport


Just got something really very precious in my mailbox today. My first American passport, sent as a U.S. Government Official Mail through USPS. My hands were trembling opening the Priority Mail envelope, like a child excitedly opening a Christmas gift. There it was, the bluest of blue with the Great Seal of the United States of America etched in gold. Yehey!, the Pinoy side of my brain exclaimed. Oh yeah!, the Americanized side of my brain proclaimed. Right away I went to the page where my personal info was, reading out loudly the name, the date, the spelling, e-v-e-r-y s-i-n-g-l-e detail to make sure it's correct and it's mine.

Enclosed in the envelope was the notice that greeted me: With Your U.S. Passport, the World is Yours! It sounds so grand it actually sounds pompous. Visions of me conquering the world with this piece of booklet seductively played in my mind. Where am I going to first? - that's a question that will be answered in the weeks to come. Ever since I had the travel itch, I've always wanted to travel as easily as possible when crossing borders and facing grumpy immigration officers. With this piece of weapon, all 32 pages of it, I'm hoping to enter through foreign doors smoothly.


A day after my oath-taking as an American on June 30, I applied for my passport. As a first time applicant, I had to appear personally at a local post office, stood in line for more than an hour threatened by varicose veins, and paid $100 to a very pleasant postal worker who told me to expect my passport mailed to me in 4-6 weeks. And what a surprise today, it's in my hands only 2 weeks since I applied. Talk about efficiency in the middle of a busy travel season.


As I happily look at my new baby embedded with electronic chip, I remember my old one, now buried in my drawer. It officially died when I became an American. My green Pinoy passport was my travel buddy since 1993 when I first went out of the Philippines. Together we traveled many times. Together we faced a lot of scrutiny. Now that I'm looking at it again, I can only hope that one day, Pinoys will be able to travel to as many countries as freely as any citizen of the western world.

Meanwhile, let me plan my first trip with this blue passport.


  1. Congrats Nomadic Pinoy! Im sure you'll blog about the big difference your new passport makes with how immigration officers, customs officials, etc. interact with you.

  2. that's what you get from a country who values and work hard for a better system.

    good for you and i always wish that our country will soon have the same set up. i wish.

  3. i don't know pero medyo nalungkot ako sa pagkamatay ng Filipino passport mo. ang gwapo pa naman sana ng picture he he. Nway, congrats! pwede ka ng sumugod kahit saang bansa ng walang visa. pero pano yan, e di nomadic kano ka na? :-)

  4. Like r-yo, lungkot din yung initial reaction ko when I read the part that your Filipino passport died. Substance over form though, I know you love being a Filipino.

    The blue passport's tagline "The World is Yours" is so true. Less hassle talaga when traveling.

  5. What's the first trip?

  6. Congrats on your lovely blue passport! That would certainly open more travel opportunities :D

  7. i'm pretty sure pinoy pa rin si Dennis sa isip, puso at kaluluwa. he's a citizen of the world! (corny ba?)

  8. Turning in the green for the blue passport, ha? I felt the cosmic movement here in Pinas when you opened the envelope. Haha. I'm sincerely happy for you! Congrats and conquer the world!

  9. Hi Gigit (AKA TheLoneRider),
    Absolutely. I'm hoping to test drive this passport once my vacations plans are ironed out. Hope to see you!

    Hi Dong,
    I know there's a lot of work to be done and expenses to be incurred to modernize Philippine passports (i.e. electronic chip) - but who knows, your wish might just come true.

    Hi R-yo,
    Alam mo, pumasok din sa isip ko kung papalitan ang pangalan ng blog pero I'll stick to it now. For sentimental reasons baga. Salamat!

    Hi Witsandnuts,
    Totoo yan, di ko talaga maiaalis sa akin ang aking pagka-Pinoy. Nagbago man ang kulay ng pasaporte ko, di ko tatalikuran ang aking pinanggalingan.

    Hi Anil,
    You'll find out - I'm still working on it.

    Hi Nina,
    Yes, it definitely will open more travel opportunities. There are some countries(Russia, China,Brazil etc.)that still require visas for Americans although without as much hassle.

    Hi Noel,
    Oo naman, di mawawala ang pagka-Pinoy natin. Kahit naman saan ako magpunta, kung ano ako noon, ganun pa rin ako ngayon.

    Hi Abaniko,
    Thanks. It was worth waiting for.

  10. You probably know this already having traveled a lot overseas: It is good to keep your passport number or better still, a copy of the picture page of your passport where you can easily retrieve it in case you lose your passport while traveling.

    My buddy lost his US passport while we were traveling in Europe and it took us less than a couple of hours to get a new one at the US consulate in Milan! We had his passport number and date of issue and that was all that was needed to get a new one which was good for a whole year. Unbelievable efficiency!

  11. Hey Nomad, congrats! Where are you going to go first?

  12. well, congratulations. i wish i was more ecstatic when i got mine. of course i didn't have any travel plans in mind when my passport came.

    enjoy the benefits of carrying an american passport.

  13. i'm dang sure, your new passport wil lead your itchy feet to a whole, or rather new level of travel and adventure..i wish i can be with you in one of those..

    congratulations Dens!..

    im sure, as well, you've been and will always become a true-blooded Pinoy by heart kahit na Amboy ka na. :D

  14. congratulations! you are one of the less then 30 percent of americans with passports. haha!

    yes, that is one reason americans know very little about the rest of the world.

  15. Galing may blue passport ka na. Lucky!

  16. congrats! so, where do you start?

  17. Hi BertN,
    That's one of my greatest travel worry: losing a passport. Haven't lost one before thankfully. Thanks for the tip.

    Hi Angelo,
    I haven't decided yet but you'll find out.

    Hi Photo Cache,
    I certainly will enjoy the benefits - especially one that relates to travel.

    Hi Josh,
    Oo naman,wala namang nagbago sa akin. Thanks. Who knows, our paths would cross one day and you could join me in a trip!

    Hi Atticus,
    Wow, that's one trivia I didn't know. Thanks for sharing.

    Hi Redlan,

    Hi Inkversified,
    I'm still going to decide on this.


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