I got my new U.S. passport in the mail last week and sent it off to get a visa for my trip to China next week. Passport pictures are inevitably unfortunate, of course. With my sabbatical coming up next year and an around-the-world journey planned, I asked for a 48-page version rather than the standard 24-page issue. I was a few months too early to get the new high tech passports, which have an embedded chip that supposedly will make it even easier to get through immigration lines at airports and such.
This spring I ought to be able to finish the process of obtaining my Irish citizenship, which will enable me to travel through the European Union on an Irish passport. (My grandparents were born in Ireland, which makes me eligible for a Foreign Births citizenship.)