Yesterday was what I thought would be our final trip to Migraciones, at least for a couple of years. Ruben was sick with the flu, the traffic was unbelievable, and we wanted to get to La Trastienda to cheer our student who was competing in the first round of the Campeonato. But we knew we had to get it done before my 2 month old DNI expires this week. When we were there last week they gave me a folder with all the requirements of the Pensionada Visa, and so I had them all, the photocopies, the new pictures, the police clearance, etc., in addition to pounds of papers I had from previous tramites, just to be on the safe side.
The clerk didn't give a damn about anything that I had, and would only scribble on a Post-it note a new list of papers I need before the expiration date of Friday, Aug. 27. She wanted me to bring a letter from the U.S. Consulate about my pension, and wouldn't even look at the apostilled, officially translated and approved, letter from the Los Angeles Public Library which affirmed that I have an early retirement income, and which proved my status oh so many years ago when I originally applied for residency. She said that I need $2,000 usd/mo while the brochure says it's 2,000 pesos Argentinos. "Oh," she said, "That brochure hasn't been good since July 6th!" "But they just gave me this brochure here last week!" "Doesn't matter. And you need a bank account in an Argentine bank." But I have all this papers that show all of my pension is withdrawn here and I spend it all here every month." "Doesn't matter," she says, without looking at my paperwork.
So I just returned from the Banco Frances where I had opened an account two years ago to satisfy another megalomaniac in Migraciones, but since I had never used it--we spend all our money every month; how to pay 60 pesos/mo for maintenance?--the account was of course closed. I can't open a new one without more papers from AFIP and an utility bill (only gas, electric or telephone) in my name, and those bills which I pay every month are in the name of the owner of the apartment.
If I don't have everything down in Retiro by Friday, I have to pay 900 pesos fine.
I'm ready to forget the whole thing and to just leave every three months like before, or just leave period.
Argentina is a fabulous vacation destination but it beats the heck out of me why anybody would want to live here if they had a choice.