Why is it that I must answer "Yes" when all I want to do is answer "No?"
When returning to the U.S., we are required to complete a U.S. Customs Declaration form. I know that all the customs agent wants to see is a series of X's in the "No" column. But, it seems I can't do that.
Excerpts from the Customs Declaration form:
I am (We are) bringing fruits, vegetables, plants, seeds, food, insects: Yes or No?
Um, well, yes. But, no I'm not trying to smuggle in fruits, vegetables, plants, seeds, or insects. I'm simply bringing home Laima chocolate from Latvia and Kalev chocolate from Estonia. But, technically, yes I have food. Okay, the answer is Yes.
I am (We are) bringing soil or have been on a farm/ranch/pasture: Yes or No?
Um, well, yes. I guess I've been on a farm and maybe I have some soil on my shoes. So, okay, the answer is Yes.
I have (We have) been in close proximity of (such as touching or handling) livestock: Yes or No?
Um, well, yes, if you count me petting a sheep for a photo op when I visited friends and their farm. Okay, I guess the answer is Yes. You can read more about this farm visit here.
In spite of that, my return to the U.S. through Chicago was quick and uneventful. I guess the truth WILL set you free.