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Tuesday, February 8

Au Suivant!

Well, my visa should be coming back in the mail in the next couple of days. *being very cool and detached about it while singing "it's my birthday" and shaking my bootie* ahem, yes, the consular officers took my paperwork and wished me a good day and that was that. So simple, so easy, that the only way I could possibly draw material from it would be to compare it to French bureaucracy, and i'm too much the patriot to stoop so low. I mean, I was only there 150 minutes, wasn't asked a single question at any of the three tills I was called to "Number 60 to Window 7!", "No.... I am NOT a Number, I am a FREE MAN!", cut to shot of big white balloon bouncing into the waiting hall, thinning the droves of applicants, and, it turned out, had brought WAY too much paper, photographs, and various sundries, although the proof of payment of the fees was much appreciated. Stamp, stamp, ok, thank you sir, you can go now, the visa will be in the mail in a couple days. Anticlimactic, what? Well, I did get a nice jolt of satisfaction from a quintessentially french couple who cut the line. They decided to skip the first line, which ended at a jolly little man who checked you had all your paperwork in order, did not pass go, and went straight to the second line. Well, it turns out that the first line gets you a pass to the express line which has priority over the second line. So *I* got number 60 (this is with showing up 15 minutes before the clerks even started work), and they got number 90, bwahahahaha! Line cutting is a big french vice I do NOT share and do NOT find endearing in my countrymen. I guess the US consulate set this system up as a way to prioritize non-french applicants without saying so, because that line #2 was TWICE as long as line #1 and the express line COMBINED. Cheaters are so dumb. Oh, and actor Tchéky Kario was applying for the same visa as I, and he had number 75, even if his Bacon Number is an impressive (for a non-US actor) Two. Now, I don't know how HE did it, but he went way before me, and he got the cute clerk (I got grandma #3) AND she told him to go around and she'd meet him in her office. I wonder what he did, but I guess he was to me, what I was to those stupid french line-cutters. Suddenly happy to be outtadairer, by about forty minutes. Location : Beauvais, France.

7 Insights :

Blogger ViVi intuited...

Congrats! It is so anticlimatic tho, isn't it? You expect a marching band and balloons to come out of the ceiling, after all the work you put into it!

2/08/2005 08:29:00 PM  
Blogger La Nina intuited...

Nice Prisoner reference. :)

2/08/2005 08:51:00 PM  
Blogger Coquette intuited...

Yay! Good story with (*fingers crossed*) happy ending! We take success with French bureaucratic systems over "material" any day ;)

2/08/2005 10:06:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous intuited...

Hey Mathieu...congratulations friend. We hope everything works out for you.

Pookie Bear and Jelly Bear
North Woods Guys

2/08/2005 11:13:00 PM  
Blogger Mathieu intuited...

Vivi, I'd have settled with the private interview!

Nina, I'm glad somebody caught it and decided to keep it. Be nice to it and send me pictures of it when it grows up, ok?

Coquette, couldn't agree more. ANY win over bureaucrazy is to be savoured.

NBGs, thanks! I still can't quite believe it's 19", even shared between the two of ya.

2/08/2005 11:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous intuited...

Congratulations! This is such good news.

By the way, I get so mad at the French line cutters. I am a believer in process and "following the rules" and it is always difficult for me when I see certain people attempting to break all of those rules. Luckily, my French isn't very good or I probably would have gotten into trouble with some of the things I would have liked to have said.


2/09/2005 11:50:00 AM  
Blogger Jellyfish intuited...

Wow, congrats. That rocks! Go Mathieu, it's your birthday! Go Mathieu, it's your birthday!

Just as well you do not share that tendancy to cut lines. Americans are sooooo touchy about their lines. I first travelled in the US with my folks when I was two, they reckon my first proper sentence was: 'Hey! There's a *line* here!' which apparently I could mimic in a perfect American accent, having heard it so many times.

2/12/2005 06:42:00 AM  

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