Government offices can be very intimidating. Perhaps that's by design.
The first person you encounter, I call them the "Defense". They have all the answers and will often answer before you ask, while highlighting a paper with the address where you were supposed to go. They're usually sarcastically polite, and rather curt. They have seen 100's of people every day, most of them demanding that the rules bend for their case...I can understand.
The next step is to walk through the metal detectors and wait. All the while you are anxiously watching the scrolling numbers, waiting for your number to come across. And just as it seems the numbers are moving quickly, there's a long 'stall' 2 numbers before your own.
All too often it seems the people behind the desks are either just coming back from a coffee break or just going to leave for their coffee break. It is Spain, perhaps there is a mandated number of cafe con leche breaks?
Today, we went to renew our residency paperwork. Because of the move and chaos of life, we are in a bit of a rush because our residency cards expire next week. But God has been with us each step of this process. I reminded myself of that fact as I sat staring at the board blinking "R534". God demonstrated his power over "Pharaoh" again today. We sat at the girl's desk and she quickly processed both Jeff and my paperwork, even making a copy of something we had forgotten to include! So, it's done. We just wait for the letter to come back to record our fingerprint, and we're legal again for another 2 years.
The boys paperwork will be done on Friday in a separate office for minors.
Wednesday, 21 October 2009
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
It's a never ending stream of people. People rushing past on the left. People running up stairs on the right. And at both ends are massive amounts of stairs with no elevator in sight. And I'm dragging a crying three year old, with a wiggly two year old strapped into a stroller. Needless to say, it's enough to discourage even the strongest of souls.
Jeff is traveling around Spain with a visiting youth band, and I have assumed the role of "Super Mommy". Except without the super. Jeff usually takes our oldest to school on the Madrid Metro each morning, and picks him up. One boy on the Metro is not so bad...it's the combination that's killer.
At just the point when I think I'll just keep Bram home from school the rest of the week rather than do this again, someone will offer to help me carry the stroller up the stairs or offer me a place to sit down on the Metro. It's the little things that really make a difference.
4 days till Jeff comes home...