My bedroom floor has been overtaken by paper over the past couple of months. It began with a soon to be out of date passport, gained momentum with the lost birth certificate and accelerated when I needed a police check. The carpet began to disappear as I fanned bank statements and travel insurance documents in easily navigable arrangements. I booked a one way ticket to Paris and added it to the pile. Then the french translations began to creep across the room. By the time title deeds and electricity bills had arrived from a friend in France, my visa application process had spread into the lounge room. My housemates generously ignored it.
Yesterday I loaded 1.015kg of original documents plus two folders of certified copies into my backpack and rode through the empty streets of Canberra as the first hint of dawn brushed the sky. By 6.45am I was on the bus to Sydney. The guy next to me slept for the entire three and a half hours. I didn’t.
By 11am, my date with destiny was staring from behind a plate glass barrier. As directed, I pulled the carefully prepared documents from their plastic sleeves, removed the paperclips and passed each page through the slot in the window, in the prescribed order. My folders were now strewn across the floor. The clerk slowly scrutinised each document. At ten minutes to 12 he looked at me directly and told me that I had applied for the wrong visa. He added that there was a more appropriate visa, however it required some missing documents. Could I get a statuary signed declaration and more bank statements before the office closed at 12.20?
My resolve didn’t waver. If the application wasn’t completed today, I would have to wait another month for the next appointment and by then, my documents would be out of date…
PS. Yes, I’d rather be at the coast instead of doing admin.