After eleven years living, dancing, teaching tango, and writing in Buenos Aires, I came home to L.A. in 2014, where I'm reconstructing my life.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The DNI Story

Here's the latest in the never-ending series of Paper Chase posts:

To catch you up, in case all the details of tangocherie's struggle for legality have slipped your mind, after seven years of trying, I finally received my first DNI  (I.D. card) last June, two months ago. It expires this month.

Yesterday Ruben and I went back to Migraciones to ask what to do. We took a number from the machine, #457, and took seats, well I did, as there was only one. They called #31. I saw Ruben in the middle of a tightly pressed group crowded around someone too short to be seen at the side of the room, everyone waving their arms. I read my book. Then a lady in front of me vomited and fainted dead away. Security rushed over with a drink of water, a doctor came, and her tramite was hand-carried to her, who by now thankfully had recovered. The atmosphere in there was terrible; I completely understand anyone being overcome by the crowds, overheating, screaming babies.

We finally were called, got the information that I had to re-collect new editions of the many official papers that I already had--police report, bank statements, photos, certificado de domicilio--and $600 pesos to apply for the renewal next week. As in any government red-tape in any country, it's all about ways to collect fees. Woe to me if I apply after the expiration date.

If you watch this video you'll know exactly how I felt. 

Off we went on a Mr Toad's Wild Ride to smog-filled Calle Tucuman where there was no parking. I had forgotten my inhaler, and I begged to forget it for today. (I was tempted to say forget it forever!!) But Ruben was doing his best, and that's the way it is in the Paris of South America. (At least the ride didn't end in Hell like Mr Toad's!) Stay tuned.


a Broad said...

Muchas hugs and pats on the head from someone who has been through this ... too recently for it to be a good memory .. or even a dim memory.

We are "Permanent" but because , I am sure you noticed, they moved the other building from 25 de Mayo , into the same building with the DNI people and renovated the entire place.. so papers are not all there or not available.
We have been back twice for our Final Stamp and they keep telling us to come back in 15 days, then this last one was 3 months.
They always tell us everything is OK.. the papers are not ready.

The part you are going through is more tedious and I have some advice if you care to hear it ..
email me if you wish.
If you are there at 8 when the doors open, you will get a better number :)
If you get every single paper that you had when you first got your visa duplicated and take it with you.. you are better off.
The police are right there now so you can do that there rather than the trip downtown.

Good luck !!

Katie said...

Hi Cherie. I, too, will be embarking on the road to residency and DNI hell in the near future, as Daniel and I are planning to marry within the next six months. I don't have any advice, but I offer my support and encouragement. I hope things go relatively smoothly for you. Un beso!

tangocherie said...

Hi AB and Katie,
Yes, my paper chase is nothing extraordinary here in Argentina.
But Katie, your process should go through more smoothly once you marry a citizen, and also because you're in a small town.
I really appreciate the support and caring of my friends.
Thank you for leaving comments.
I'll keep you posted! :)

The Accidental Tangoiste said...

Ugh, what a nightmare! Good luck, Cherie! Courage!