Monday, February 26, 2007

Paper Certification

I think one of the most humiliating experiences here is trying to certify some papers from the Ministry of Exterior Affairs وزارة الخارجية. Not infrequently some of us still has to do what is called "Under supervision forms" for the sake of postponing military service while studying abroad.
The thing looks as follows: you have a certain piece of paper that says whatever, and I mean by whatever is that no one in the emabssy really reads what the "study certificate" says. Being employed is not equivalent to studying, nevertheless embassies signature and seal can be attached on anything no matter how bogus it is. This, is for the good luck of applicants of course. Anyway, next you have to put stamps on the paper: stand in line for 15 minutes
Then, certify the paper: stand in line for 20 minutes, at least
Then, make copies of the paper: stand in line for another 5-20 minutes (it depends)
Then, recertify the copies: stand in line for another 20 minutes.
If you are a girl, that gives you automatic bypass to be in front. Waiting on all lines shrinks to 2-3 minutes.
This is a hopeful estimate, the other day I went to do the papers. The first day I did the stamp. I tried to stand in line, but there were so many people lines vanished into a crowd. I gave it a try but got stuck between those going in, and coming out. I had to make my way out jumping off the fence.
Needless to mention that the place is not spacious. All are bound to some kind of body rubbing from others. One has to put up with smells of sweat, uncleanness, or other things. And you'll have to keep your hand on your ass just to make sure no one is pickpocketing you.

Now if I write my suggestins here, someone will say: save your time, you're just pissing against the wind, no one will get wet but you. So I'll leave the solutions to your imagination.


At Mon Feb 26, 11:36:00 AM GMT+2, Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you go in wearing nice clothing, somebody will approach you (usually) offering to help. give them a few dollars and they will treat you like a king, do everything for you, and come back with it all in a matter of minutes.

At Mon Feb 26, 04:20:00 PM GMT+2, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Bassam,
I made some effort to help you in your messy situation, so I went to Miss Manners web site and I found almost, another sticky situation you may get notice of and give you ideas what you can do.
The question to Miss manners goes:
Dear Miss Manners,
It seems as if lately, every time I am in a grocery store or department store line, someone pulls up behind me with their cart and proceeds to either pin me in (if someone happens to be in front of me) or push me right on past the register and out of the store.

I have tried to stand my ground and just not budge until I am ready, but I really hate getting nudged by shopping carts. It is getting to the point where I am very tempted to turn around and yell, "Back off!" in a voice very similar to Linda Blair's in The Exorcist.

If a person is in the line ahead of me, I always try to respect his or her personal space, and I try to give him or her a few feet to move and breathe. Why can't others show the same courtesy? Do you have a more tactful and mature way of handling pushy line hogs?
The answer from Miss Manners:
Gentle Reader,
If people are using their metal shopping carts to shove you all the way through the length of a check-out line to the parking lot, you should save your yelling for summoning the police and an ambulance.

Miss Manners is assuming that what you mean is that they don't give you enough room and perhaps occasionally bump up against you. Perhaps you could also remove the exaggeration from your proposed scream and instead quietly say, "Excuse me, would you mind stepping back just a little, please?"

I hope this will help since last time when I asked you to complain in a loud voice you insisted on giving advices where advices does not help.
Good luck in your visa and wellcom to America

At Tue Feb 27, 02:04:00 PM GMT+2, Blogger Bassam said...

Dear anonymouses
First of all, I know about the معقبي المعاملات over there. But being who I am, despising them, I can't have this done unless it is a matter of life or death.
anonymous 2: thanks for your effort :-) if miss manners were to write about here she'd die of exhaustion. Anyway, I have something on my mind, if it works you'll find it here.

At Tue Feb 27, 04:25:00 PM GMT+2, Blogger GraY FoX said...

looks like destiny is pushing you back to states, but you are still attached to this place,
such a magical situation, and that what makes me astonished by you wallahi
but i agree with ya about the decision :D


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