Wednesday, October 31, 2007

If I hadn't already paid for my tickets

I am about ready to cancel my trip to Brazil.
I have to get a visa since I am American and its such a bloody pain in the ass you can't even believe it. First of all, they ask for ridiculously long list of paper work, including proof of revenue, and since I have no job, I don't know how I am supposed to do that. Secondly, they won't accept the dossier by mail so I have to go over IN THE MORNING because they only accept dossiers til 11:30. And they are closed for the next two days for holiday. Then you have to pay 100 USD for the visa which frankly, if I had known before hand, I would have just gone to Argentina instead. But you can't just give them the money you have to go the post office and do some bizarre postal mandate into their bank account, which will automatically add like 3 hours onto the whole process. Then, I finally get my shit together to go over today and dash out of the house with a very uncooperative toddler who, quite understandably, does not want to spend the morning in an grimey waiting room, playing thrilling games such as "What can we find (and destroy) at the bottom of Mommy's purse" (answer: including, but not limited to: pens, tampans, half sucked on candy, toy cars, post it notes, lip gloss), get into the taxi and almost to the door of the Consulate before realizing that B did NOT put my passport back in my wallet after photo-copying it yesterday. So I have to ask the taxi to return to my house, where I dash upstairs and find it, back into the taxi, back across Paris, where the driver drops me off in front of the door. Except its the WRONG consulate. Only I don't realize this in my mad rush since I have only arrived seconds before the cut-off time. I sit there for 10 minutes before going up and finding out that I am actually at the consulate for the Congo. Oh. I dash out the door and down the street- oops, that door is for the Brazilian embassy but not the door for people getting a visa. Must go a bit further still. Finally get in the right place and as Ella starts tugging on me and screaming something in my ear, an old woman makes some announcement- which I don't quite hear. Someone tells me that she is looking for people who need to drop off their visa dossiers. So I raise my hand. Then I wave it high. Then I say, 'Visas? Me! Me!Me!' She studiously avoids looking at me, waves another couple in her office, and when they walk out, before I can get out of my chair, she locks the door from the inside. I see her grab her coat and walk out the back door.
The Bitch.
So, basically, all that effort was for naught. I'll have to try again on Monday, although, as I have said, I really really don't give that much of a shit about seeing Brazil that I think it is worth jumping through all these &*ยต%! hoops and I would quite happily spend my holiday in any other place on the *&%!, planet then Brazil at this point.
Deep breaths, Nicole. Deep breaths.

4 comments:

Amanda said...

I totally feel your pain. I've gone to Brazil twice this year, and the first time it took me three visits to the embassy to get my visa. And what do I get? A 90 day visa. So I had to go back again (and pay US$100 again) when my next trip came up. Argh! It's gorgeous down there though, so it's worth the effort!!

Nicole said...

Any advice on how to get the visa dossier right the first time?

Amanda said...

I got my visas at the Brazilian embassy in Washington, DC, so maybe it's different ... but I brought several blank applications with me (just in case they wanted me to change something), and extra copies of every other document requested, and anything else related to my trip I could think of. Seems kind of like the process of getting a Carte de Sejour in Paris, actually :)
A friend used a service that will request visas for you, and he got a 5 year visa, so that seems like the better way to go!

Sally Lomax said...

RED TAPE - AAARRGGHHHHH!!!!


Good luck!!!