October 31, 2005

Red Tape

I should have been expecting this, but for some reason I was not. This morning I went to the Federal Police to get my i.d. card and register as a foreigner living in Brazil. I was about halfway through filling out the paperwork when the lady working on my case came up to the desk.

"We have a little problem." she said.

It turns out we have two problems...and they are big enough to cause me some extra work.

Problem #1: When I was in Brazil before as a student, I had a student i.d. card. This card expired in 1996. I can remember going through some of my things a few years ago, seeing the card, and thinking, well, I won't be needing this anymore. As it turns out, before I can get my i.d. card now, I have to turn in the old one. By the way, this i.d. card is the equivalent to a Social Security number. I can do nothing here without it--and that includes getting our sea container out of customs.

Solution: I need to write an "official" document on my computer, telling them what happened to the document. I then need to print it out and take it to them.

Problem #2: When I was filling out my paperwork in 1994 for my student i.d., it asked for my mothers full name. So, I wrote down her first, middle, maiden, and last names. When filling out the paperwork for my permanent visa in Miami, I put just her first, maiden, and last names. The lady told me today they have no way of knowing if she is the same person.

Solution: I must go to the US consulate office on the other side of town and get an official statement saying that the woman in the first set of paperwork is the same as the one in the second.

I probably would have been able to take care of a couple of things today, except that we as yet have no vehicle, and are depending on the goodwill of others for our transportation. So, this could take a couple of days.

I was surprisingly un-frustrated by these events. I guess three years of deputation has served to make me deal with disappointments a little better. Anyway, please keep praying as we deal take care of paperwork issues.

Posted by Andrew at October 31, 2005 2:22 PM

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Felicidades na nossa terra..O Brazil pode ter muitos defeitos mas é muito bom para se viver... boa sorte para voces..
Diga a tacy para nos ligar..
Paulo Sergio

Posted by: Paulo Sergio at October 31, 2005 3:52 PM

What would life be without government red tape and all these chances to grow in patience! We are so excited for you guys and are thrilled you are already having opportunities to speak.

Posted by: Connie at November 1, 2005 8:07 AM

Yes, Andrew a flood of memories comes to me as I read about the red tape!! We started the day praying for you. God Bless.

Posted by: Chuck Smith at November 1, 2005 10:31 AM

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