Every time we have to renew visas...we cringe.
It's the biggest headache...ever.
We do all we can to go in prepared with the copies of every tiny thing they want and it never fails that we don't have something because they didn't tell us. It's a 20-30 minute taxi ride one way to get to the place. You take a number, sit down and wait, sometimes all morning before they get to you. You give them your documents and oops...you need this one obscure peice of documentation that could take weeks to get from your school. Oh well, your visas will expire in the mean time. Ug.
One time I was so frustrated with the annoying visa guy for talking down to me when he had forgotten to tell me something I needed and I was on my THIRD trip (my husband had made THREE trips to another office for another document) to their office that I almost went off on him in English (of which he spoke some). I finally did make my point and before I left wrote down the exact LIST of things to bring for the next time and as soon as my feet hit the ground outside their office and I knew he couldn't see me (after all, I do try to remember my witness!)...I went off...to myself...to nobody...just to get it off my chest...to God! I remember saying, let me organize this country!!! LOL. This is life in a foreign country...
Anyway, our kids visas expire at a different time than ours by less than a month. You would think we were asking for an act of Congress. No one wants to help us...especially during the summer when their work load slows down some.
Anyway, it was that dreaded time this week. But ALL PRAISE TO GOD...He made it so smooth. The annoying visa guy who talked down to me last time asked me about my language progress and we were able to converse a bit in his language and he was actually KIND to me. I left there thinking, hmmm...weird...but "thank you Lord!"
It may seem like a small thing to you, but to us, it's huge. The enemy tries to use every little nuance of life in a foreign country to steal our joy. He didn't win this time. Maybe because it was easier, maybe because we had a better attitude, maybe, maybe, maybe... whatever. He lost. We walked away with a smile on our faces and kind words to the usually annoying visa guy. And...annoying visa guy.....actually smiled back. A rarity.