Sometimes the bureaucracy just feels like a big game. Last year we went to register as foreigners, and from what I remember it went like this:
Go to some obscure location and wait. Then wait some more. With 3 kids. Then show all your paperwork. And wait. Then explain to them some detail that doesn't seem quite right. And wait. Then get a picture taken (again) and your finger prints. And wait. Then, watch the clerk pull out a HUGE book, full of millions of signatures. And add your signature (does someone actually look at this? and verify the signatures? really?!?) And then you are told you will get your card in the mail. So we wait.
A few months later, a friend wanted to go to this location to get this (or something similar) taken care of. She looked and looked for the address or phone number online, emailed us for the info after not being able to find it, and finally just ended up going. Only to find out that that location had been shut down. It had been a pet project of some government official, and then shortly after opening, was closed down. And then a few months later it opened up again! It's almost like a form of entertainment. Like hide and seek. "Make the estrangeiros find the office to register!"
I won't even get into what is going on now with our Visa status.
But here is a little something that I would like to do when I do have to actually show up and sign that big stupid book again:
4 weeks ago