Yahooo! I became a French legal resident today. Now the celebration is on. Listen folks, I have been waiting for this for more than 7 months. All the paperwork, drives to Marseille, medical visits, money spent and French administration headaches (oh the horror) and now I have reaped the rewards. I actually have a bona fide status AND card. Instead of being an interim resident, it is now an Official resident. Yes, that’s right. Official with a capital “O”. It is one small step, but a very important one. I can’t wait for someone to ask me for identification so I can pull that puppy out and say. “Check it!” It feels so good to have something finally completed here. This is big progress towards becoming a Frenchie!
The day started out with a few hours spent at the prefecture. This is the French administration building where everyone in this region goes to get their official paper work done. The lady behind the glass said she remembered me from months ago and she was really nice to us. We signed all our paper work and gave her these goofy stamps that are tax stamps required for payment to the French government for getting your carte de sejour. I kind of felt like I had visited the Blue Chip Stamp store, like when I was a kid.
So we handed over our stamps, signed our paperwork and got our residency. I heard fireworks, let me tell you. This is the most beautiful card I have ever seen and I am not lying. We are celebrating tonight. It’s called Jaffa Cakes and Bubbling Apple Cider:)
The only downside is that my daughter doesn’t have her paperwork, yet. We were informed that she has to wait an extra 45 days before she is legal. Why, you ask? No answer. Just because this is France. She will however have to join in on my celebration. That’s a given. So back to Marseille we will go in around a month and a half to make her official.
I really was trying to get it all done in one day. Let me tell you why. It is very specific. I hate going to Marseille.
I am going to be totally honest and just let you know right off the bat that I don’t like it. A lot of people do and they say that it has a certain vibe and flavor, but I must confess that I don’t like the vibe or flavor. It is very crowded, noisy, dirty and impossible to park your car without paying a ridiculous amount of Euros to do so. I think the best word for me to use is sad. As you look around the town you notice the separation between the rich and poor is great. There are the people walking around and shopping in their nice clothes and those who are sitting on the steps of public areas begging for money. It is very difficult for me to be there.
I know that there are so many wonderful places to visit in Marseille, especially if you love history as much as I do. Unfortunately, these places aren’t a draw to me because going there is such a pain in the butt. There are all the scooters coming out of nowhere and people walking in the middle of the street and not looking. You seriously feel like you’re in some video came just trying to finish the race. Oh yah, and the lanes and streets are too small for more than half the cars on the road. Hate it, just hate it!
I am probably missing out on some great stuff, but I think I can live with it. I am just glad I made it through another outing there and I don’t have to go back for another 45 days. Most of all I AM AN OFFICIAL RESIDENT.