By "certified", I had to have a notary public write the following on the back of every photo and photocopy of the paperwork...the stamp and signature wasn't enough, had to be hand written:
"I certify that this is a true photograph/copy of the original sighted by me of Evan E. Fusco", then they had to sign, put their title, license number and the date."
Some originals had to go to the emergency medicine people, but some originals to the AMC, some paperwork to one, other to the other, and sorting it all out was nerve wracking....and, honestly, I'm not sure I've got it all correct. And, if I screwed up anything, the AMC will charge me another $110 to tell me I screwed up and for the privileged of fixing it! I still don't have a formal contract with the hospital, I presume they want to wait until all the licensing and Visa stuff goes through. I hope to start working immediately upon arrival so that we have more time for travel in and around Australia at the end of my 6 month contract, but before we start on our 'around the world' swing.
On the up side, we now have contacts in almost every country we'll be traveling to! It's kind of amazing, as word of our trip has gotten around friends of our have friends or family living in most of the places we'll be going. We haven't made direct contact with some of them yet, but it's nice to know that in a pinch we could probably find someone who knows the terrain.
We have pretty firm commitments from friends to come down for a visit at Christmas and from family (Tamara's side) for Thanksgiving. My parents have started saving up and hope to make the trip down for a visit while we're there as well. Another relative may be coming down with her girlfriend for New Years. Wonder if the Australian Tourism council is going to give us a kick-back?
Tamara and I have taken our Typhoid vaccine (4 pills in 7 days), we'll get the kids theirs in a few weeks. That's needed mostly just for the Asian portion of the trip--it's good for 5 years so it's good to get that out of the way.
We've decided to put copies of all our crucial documents on a thumb drive in case our originals get stolen, lost or damaged. I'll also burn a CD or two to leave here in case the thumb drive is lost stolen or damaged too.
So, maybe not the biggest update, but I haven't posted for a while. The kids get out of school soon, so I may start encouraging them to post some of their thoughts--for posterity sake if nothing else. It's an interesting time, we've moved from the excitement of the reality of the trip to the more intense planning. Trips to the bank for financial arrangements, figuring out how to cut back expenses and pay our bills and keep in touch. Most people at work have stopped asking "I heard a rumor you're moving to Australia." to "When do you leave for your trip? How long will you be gone?" questions.
*edit:B/C someone asked, we leave August 5th, will be in Oz until mid-February 2011, and return to the US late April 2011.