Thursday, October 22, 2009

I'm an alien

Since moving here in December 2008, I have been on the long road to gaining permanent residence here, i.e. a legal alien.  I made my first visit to the 'Policia Federal' in Maringa, in April of last year and was told to await a home visit, which sounded to me like they were going to approve where I lived and deem it suitable 'alien accommodation'. 

A couple of weeks ago after returning to Brazil from my honeymoon, I finally had a visit from the PF representative.  Of course she came on the day when I was still in my PJs, with honking morning breath, gossiping with my mother-in-law, yes she is that nice.

I had slept in, left my bed unmaid.  It's always good to make a great first impression when your future is at stake.  Or maybe it's better that it was messy, more realistic, who knows.

Simone, a tall blonde, came through the door and introduced herself.  "Hi", I said hoping that my Portuguese would see me through all the answers I was about to give.  She asked me all these questions about how I'd met my husband Paulo, and it began to feel like a scene from Green Card, remember that awful 90s movie with Andie McDowell and Gerard Depardieu?

Soon enough I had turned it into a scene from MTV's Cribs when she asked to see our bedroom.  I apologised for the unmade bed.  "Don't worry, it's the fifth one I've seen today", she said slightly miffed.

Unfazed I proceeded to show her through my entire wardrobe, explaining how I categorised our clothes, which were my favourites and which ones I couldn't wear here as I thought they were too chic.  I realised almost immediately that my capsule collection of Issa, McQueen, Basso & Brooke and Vivienne were hardly going to see the light of day in this small town, where popular brands are Guess and Tommy Hilfiger, but at least I could look after them!

Aside from giving a lesson in British fashion I managed to learn a bit about the other foreigners living in Maringa.  Apparently we are some 3,000 strong and consist mainly of students who attend the University of Maringa, where my brother-in-law works as a physical education teacher.  Also working there is an Englishman called Peter who has lived here for about 20 years and is married to a Brazilian woman.  I know that there are several other English and some American citizens living here, but as yet I have yet to meet any of them. 

All in all it was an interview that I will never forget.  I now have to wait up to six months to know whether my apllication has been successful. 

Fingers crossed.


  1. Hello Braziliant! Didn't know you had a blog, looking forward to travelling vicariously through you! I love Brazil, I went on a trip to shoot once and again for my honeymoon two years ago.
    How is the language going? And thanks so much for following and putting me on your blog list. laura x

  2. wow!! I love this place Brazil.
    i was just lookin for some good read on Brazil and I come across your blog.
    good one with a personal touch :)

  3. hi! so you moved in December, since you are from Britain you didn't need a visa right, how long could you stay before getting married? were you married before you got there or after? and you started your application for residency in april and they just got to you? wow....... and why on earth did she go through your wardrobe and bedroom! hehehe sorry please don't answer all those questions, for a second i got really nervous reading this. im getting married to a brazilian in february and so will have to go through the same process as you. thanks for the heads up about the bed :P

  4. Start a Facebook group "Estrangeiros in Maringa" , we've got one for Porto Alegre!