We tried to go get our visas but she said Noo Noo No /amywinehouse

Sam and I have been going to and from London the past couple of weeks to finalise our visas!  Our Ethiopian visa, which we have heard can be a bit problematic at times, went super smoothly!  We were in and out in no time and only had to wait 24hours to pick them up!  Great times!  The problem lay in picking up another Visa for a North African country which proved a little more challenging.  Even though we had been through a broker in order to obtain it and paid $400 each already and been reliably informed they were ready to go, the embassy proved to be a bit of a dead end.

Beardless Woes:

Stupidly… I went in to collect it whilst Sam sat outside in the car so to save us parking costs.  Whilst waiting in a queue I had some chap come up to me in the queue and ask in broken English with a quizzically furrowed brow “you… you want to go to this country?…. You?”.  The emphasise wasn’t in the confusion of why I would want to visit what I presume was his homeland, but more that I… of all people… would want to go. I gave a rather enthusiastic response of “Yup I sure do!! Can’t wait” and then watched him sidle off, eyeing me up, still looking a bit confused and then mumble some words to his friend and then stopping and simultaneously both looking up at me confused.  It was then I realised I was the only western girl in the room and realised perhaps…  this was not one of our well thought out moments and maybe Sam should have been in my place.  Nevertheless, I stuck in the queue and eventually reached the counter where I am greeted by a lady who sounded exactly like the mexican cleaning lady from Family Guy:

Server: “So.. you want Visas?”
Me: “Yes please!”
Server: “You on computer system I see. You have visas.”
Me: “Brilliant… here are our passports… thank you again!”
Server: *takes passport… looks at them… looks at me…. looks at screen* “No noo”
Me: “I’m sorry is there a problem?”
Server: “No visas no.  Not today.  Next week.”
Me: “Oh… okay… erm… maybe this afternoon?” (thought I’d try my luck)
Server: “…. nooo noo no”
Me: “Okay… what day would be suitable?”
Server: “Next week.  Maybe Monday”
Me: “Sure… and what time?”
Server: “In the day time” *hands back passports*
Me: “Oh… so you don’t want the passports now?”
Server: “…. noo. noo noo.”
Me: “Okay… can I leave them with you perhaps?”
Server: “… erm… nooo. noo.”
Me: “May I post them to you?”
Server: “Noo. No no.”
Me: “Okay… who do I need to give them to next Monday?”
Server: “Ooh…. ohh. Me.”
Me: “Oh… Okay… and I cannot leave them here with you for you to process Monday?”
Server: “….. noo. No no.”
Me: “If I come back in on Monday, can you post them back to me?”
Server: “Erm… …. … yes.”
Me: “Oh excellent!  And how long would they take to send back?”
Server: “Ooh… ooh. I do not know.  Maybe a week?”
Me: “Ah okay. So… erm right!  I will be back on Monday then with the passports and forms!”
Server: “OK.  And Also £200”
Me: “Oh?”
Server: “Yes. £200. Two visas… £200.”
Me: “Okay!  Sure… erm… thank you!  Big thank you! Have a nice day!”

Hahahaha!  Madness!  Thing is, Sam went in the next week and lo and behold he spoke to the same lady who asked her colleague fella to help Sam who initially told him he had missed the time to come in (they were shut for an hour and half lunch when we went in… note… they only open 10:30 to 15:00!). Sam then insisted by saying “No no, we have the visas now thank you”… and the guy processed it for him no problems!  So man and stealthy beard power seems to be the way to go!

BIG THANK YOU to my Ma and Pa who kindly popped up to London to collect our passports once they had been processed :) This gave us the time to sort out various other bits and bobs and tie up some loose ends so we were eternally grateful!

All sorted now after much fiasco!  It’s taken an extra week than expected which has delayed us but that just means a few more nights in a snug bed and with home cooked meals! :D


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1 Comment

  1. bernard

    January 28, 2013
    / Reply

    Did you say £100 each for a VISA? For real?

    According to teh Ethiopian Embassy a multiple Entry valid for 6 months is £30.00 and a Transit Visa is Single transit visa £14.00, Double transit visa £22.00.

    Language confusion perhaps?

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