Thanks to the wonderfully over complex bureaucracy that countries have with transitioning I now have a complete set of official documents to say who I am, and before I, or my therapist, was expecting it as well!. I know that some people don't think it should matter, but it does to me. If I have to produce my drivers license, passport or residency permit (as I'm an ex-pat I need one) I don't want to have to explain why the card and person holding it don't seem to match!
I got the letter a couple of weeks ago saying I could pick it up - but had to wait a few days before I could get around to it (government opening hours and all that!).
I sat in the waiting room for what seemed an age (OK, it was an age ;p) waiting for my number to appear on the screen. Then it came.
Go to the counter and passed my passport, the letter saying it was ready, and the old residency permit. The woman on the other side smiled and said "Oh, great! You have everything ready for me!" (I have to ask why is that a surprise. But I suppose that is a different story...)
She went through the documents one by one and got to the old residency permit.
"Err, but this permit if for a man"
"No, er... This permit is for a *man*"
"Er... Yes, that is correct. Unfortunately. That's why I need a new one"
"Oh! I'm so sorry, I never realised! My apologies!"
I did explain that she really didn't have to apologise. Really not. I told her that in fact I took it as a huge compliment that she didn't know.
Everything was sorted with the new one in a few minutes, I paid the not as obscene as the UK documents amount of money for the new card and got up to leave.
Again she apologised and again I told her it was a nice thing that she didn't realise.
"Well, I'm glad that you take it as a compliment, but I'm still really sorry I did that to you!"
It just goes to show that there are some wonderful people working for the government as well as the jobsworths that are the stereotype!
So yes. Full compliment of official documentation now. A milestone I can check off. Just my degree and the last few companies that I need to tell (the ones that make you send in letters, in triplicate, signed in the blood of a dragon type of places) and I'm sorted.
And relax and smile :)
(And there go my watery eyes again with the realisation of where I am!)