Monday, 10 August 2009

Exit Visa Limbo Hell

I'm writing this post in my journal in an attempt to quell the chaos.

It's been a long morning and my patience is as weary as the withering AC unit that is currently blowing hot air onto my face.

I'm sitting in the Ministry of Higher Education's Administration of Finance but don't ask me why. I am looking for a woman named Souad who is apparently going to give me an official letter that will fit in nicely with the other two letters I have already retrieved from the University of Khartoum. These letters form the backbone of an impressive portfolio of pieces of paper that I have managed to amass in my three days (and counting) in exit visa limbo hell. Some are photocopies. Some are photocopies of photocopies. Some feature suspicious stamps that cost more than advertised. Some took hours or preparation and patience while some fell from the sky like drops of golden sunlight on cloudy miserable days. My portfolio is heavy, crumpled and grudgingly held in my fist. 

All in all, it has been a pleasant trip in visa limbo hell but I am quite ready to depart...

Souad Ahmed of the Ministry of Higher Education, where are you???? And when will you return to your office and furnish me with the ultimate jewel in my crown? 

For yes, I do wish to return to the Department of Foreigner Registration (or whatever that place is called) and partake in the multicultural jousting sessions you hold in your midst. I want to marvel at the beautiful system in which 10% of the workforce carries out 99% of the work. Perhaps if I am really fortunate, you might throw in another HIV test. It's been six months and who knows what I get up to in Khartoum, the Las Vegas of Africa. There is real money to be made in the veins of khawagas.

I wonder if the secretaries in Souad's office will let me have a go on Solitaire. I have been a very supportive spectator and there are no men to play the mustache game with. Is a nap out of the question?

Man, I wish I had more "wasta".

Outburst over. Malesh Laura. Bokra Inshallah you will get your visa... or at least hand in your passport to retrieve it baad al bokra, or baad baad al bokra... INSHALLAH. Otherwise no holiday for you. : (


  1. I know! Las Vegas for New Year's baby!

    ps. keeping my fingers and toes crossed that you'll get your exit visa very soon.

  2. Blessed are your toes, so my visa will come soon (inshallah, obviously).