13 August 2008

Almost ready for the off - just

Okay, picture the scene. T minus three, ten pm, a general retiring to bed amidst growing signs of pre-departure nerves in mother. I’m just pritt sticking Ranger’s pic in his passport (optional but cute) when I have a light-bulb moment – where are the red jobs? Cue feverish hunt of the shelves – relief when I spy the fancy gold lettering – and complete mental breakdown when I see that A’s passport has expired. Last December. Bloody buggery bollocks, as they say in Ab Fab. I impart the news to mother who visibly wilts in front of me, sinking to the sofa as the vision of her Room 101 – a Ryanair flight – swims into view. What to do? Well, it’s SuperGreygal to the rescue as I google emergency passports and discover that the IPS (Identity and Passport Service) do a same day, super fast track version – all yours for just £114! So at 10.15pm, I ring up and make an appointment – yes, you read it correctly, make an appointment. At 10.15pm. Well done, the IPS!

We duly trotted along to the Peterborough Office at 4pm today and after half an hour we were all done – they were friendly, efficient and as several crisp twenties passed across the counter, eager to assure us that a newly minted, in date passport would be ready for collection first thing tomorrow (it was a bit late in the day for a genuine same day but we weren’t complaining). Mother is mightily relieved and is now confidently planning the travelling commissariat – so tomorrow, despite my reassurances that there are in fact shops en route, we’ll be going back for the other half of Sainsburys.

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