Friday, June 13, 2008

Bureaucracy and success!!

I am trying to get the 15 different things that I need to hand in to be able to extend my visa to stay here in Bosnia (PTL I will soon be able to apply for my long-stay/permanent residency and all this will be a fond memory!). A new thing they have added this year for added fun (like the 14 things weren't enough) is a Police Clearance Certificate/Background Check from your home country... having lived here in Bosnia for 7 years this seems a bit silly, but hey!

I checked online and I need to send everything to South Africa and one of the things I need to send are my fingerprints. I go to the office for foreigners (where I get my visa) and asked them if they know where I could get my fingerprints done. The lady, who is the boss of the whole office, said "there is no way that they can be done here in the police in Banja Luka, not a chance". And she was very definite - there is NO WAY! Her solution was for me to get a statement saying there is no way to do the clearance certificate without the fingerprints and then they would figure out what to do with me...Great.

So, having to go to the police station anyway to try again to register my car (that is another whole story!!) I decided to listen to the little voice in my head and just go and ask them if they would take my fingerprints... And guess what! They were all very nice and said that it would not be a problem!! I just needed to bring some sort of form. I went home, went online and looked and looked and eventually found a form which looks like it will do the trick and went back and they did them for me no problem!!! It pays to ask (and to listen to the little voice - thank-you God!!)

I so wanted to go back to the foreigner's office to show her that I had successfully done what she had said was IMPOSSIBLE! But I held back. I will tell them when I go next time, because I think with people needing police clearance certificates that it will be something that will need to be done more and more!!

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