Day 725: A Visa to Brazil

Lara and I have long sworn by the ease with which visas can be haggled for overseas. Indeed, when traveling we often postpone getting visas to later destinations on the itinerary until we get to our first stop. (i.e. we're going to Australia and then Vietnam, so we decide to get the visa for Vietnam in Australia)

The benefits of this strategy are strongest when you're dealing with small visa offices and bored employees, which seem to come at a higher rate outside of American metropolises.

So, when I needed a visa for Brazil, I went to the American consulate in Buenos Aires. (Truth be told, I'm not going to the USA anytime soon so there was not other option.)

Although I read the requirements online, I decided it would be better to simply go and see what the heck they wanted from me, as I was certain that anything I could prepare beforehand would not be sufficient. It wasn't. Three trips later, they were satisfied with the way that my bank statements, credit cards, and employee verification affidavits were arranged in my nice manila folder.

The woman signed me off, told me to go to some bank in the city to pay 150 USD, and told me to come back in a week.

As I left the office, I was typically fuming, with all the time wasted and stupid hoops I had had to jump through to prove that, no, I don't work with Brazilian children (although I would like to) but rather with African ones. However, I realized that although the office had had many problems with my application, they did not blink at the purpose of the visit, which said that I aimed to visit my "cousin" Lara at an address I made up using the only noun I knew in Portuguese. Needless to say, Lara is in Boston.

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