On 17 January 2024, I became a citizen of the United States of America – I now have dual citizenship. I attended my interview where I was given a civics test, asked to read and write in English and asked some questions about my employment and travel history. The information I’d been given about the naturalization process had said that, if I passed my interview, I would then be given a date to take the Oath of Allegiance a few weeks later. However, they sent me downstairs after my interview and I was given a little US flag, a letter from President Biden and was told to wait.

There were six or seven other people and after about half an hour, an officer came out and to my surprise, the naturalization ceremony took place. We read the Oath and were given a naturalization certificate and that was that. Joe Biden’s letter was heart-warming but the rest of it was somewhat of an anticlimax though I was pleased that everything had been processed and all that was now left to do, was to apply for my US passport then I’d be free to come and go as I please – choose where I want work and live without consequences.

The rest of January was quite quiet with auditions but February was full of TV castings, self-tapes for films and commercials and voice overs. I had a callback for a film but two days before shooting, they still hadn’t let me know if I’d got the role so my agent pushed for a decision and they came back saying that they had gone in a different direction. I had been eager to work on this project but as they had left it so late, I was relieved that I didn’t have the stress of trying to prepare given so little time.

It’s awards season and I’ve managed to see all of the Best Picture Oscar nominated films but very few of the documentaries and animated features this year which is a shame. I’d seen most of best picture features before Christmas and I only had, The Zone of Interest, left on my list. It’s a harrowing watch and deserves its nomination but my recommendation for this month, is the television series, One Day. Based on the novel by David Nicholls, it follows two people who meet and build a relationship over a period of nearly twenty years. The two stars, Ambika Mod and Leo Woodall, are truly beautiful to watch as their friendship weaves its way through their ups and downs. It leaves a lastly impression which almost nothing does these days.