Sunday, January 09, 2011

Wherein we meet the federal police...Also: flood again!

On Friday morning at 5:45am our flight landed in Frankfurt. Since it was such an early departure from Chicago we didn't get much sleep so we were pretty tired. There's nothing you want more upon the end of a trans-Atlantic flight than to be home right away, but all these annoying little things are in the way - taxiing to the gate, passport control, baggage claim, two trains and a cab...

Normally passport control does not gum up this chain of events. Normally they don't even ask us a question, just look in there quickly and nod us through like old pals. But this time, she looked for a good long time at Damon's passport and the computer screen, then asked him for his driver's license. She was kind of mumbly and we were very tired and out of practice with our German for two weeks, so we heard that she wanted to see his plane ticket. She was not amused. He produced his driver's license and she kept looking at things. Another cop showed up in the booth to take over her spot, and she told us there was an issue with the driver's license, then led us away...down a hallway, out the door to some rainy airport alley and back in to a little outpost full of about a zillion German federal police. WTF mate - we still had no idea what could be wrong with the license. He used it to rent a car when we were in the US but never had any problems...could the rental company have screwed something up?

They called us up to the desk after a bit and said his license was reported stolen. Say what? Well, it WAS reported stolen...two and a half years ago, when he was pickpocketed by staff at Lydo Tissus in Lyon, France. (Yeah, I spelled that out for you, Google...) The wallet was returned to the Heidelberg police before the new license was issued and he had the new one cancelled. Since then we've been in and out of the country multiple times with no problem! But, something happened over the last two weeks to make it pop up again. Thankfully they believed Damon was really himself and not someone identity thief and let us carry on, but we have to go see what is up with the alert at the Heidelberg police office. Which is convenient enough since we are renewing our visas next door to there this week! Hopefully there really is nothing more to it than a little mistake...

Also: the Neckar was pretty high again yesterday! This time I got a couple of photos:

It was sloshing right over the sandbags here. The road is normally below where that fence is.

This is the other side of the bridge. I think this is definitely lower than last time.


  1. So glad you're back safe and sound. Christmas travel was so nuts this year; I was worried. That was a strange incident at the airport. I have yet to run into government officials willing to take a DL at all seriously.

  2. How strange- I got pulled over by Interpol once on a lost passport, but I can't believe Germany cared about a DL. I don't even travel with mine, so border police wouldn't have a lot of success asking for it! I wonder what would have happened if he hadn't had it with him? Glad you got through successfully!

  3. That reminds me of the time my American bank called me a year and a half after I'd been living in Germany and told me someone had been using my credit card in Germany. Yes, thank you.


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