Monday, June 1, 2009

I think I am going to Paris, France

My company is going to send me to Meudon which is south of Paris, France. Should I be excited or not?

I love to go to different places for vacation but not work. I don't like to mix things up. I like things sorted.

Anyway, I woke up today a bit earlier, like 7:30AM. Since my housemates were to go to their jobs early, I had to let them go first. I finished all the preparations at around 9AM. Since we were due for the house rental today, I had to go to the bank first and deposited the money to our landlady's savings account. I was able to transact everything at the bank around 9:10AM. I had to go back to a bus stop near our block because it was more convenient there. I did not know what bus to ride so I had go for an expensive taxi. I had written the address of the French embassy on this piece of paper which I torn from my office notebook. Anyway, the driver was a Malaysian man in his late 40's I think and he noticed that I was a Filipino. He was a very pleasant person and interacted to me by saying some of the words I knew which happens to have the same meaning in Bahasa. I told him a bit of our history that there were 10 Sultans from the Malay Islands who came to the Philippines and establish Sultanates. Then we were colonized and stuff and we were converted to Christianity. The good man then asked me of my age, what I do here in Singapore. So to show courtesy, I answered him very honestly.... He also talked about his desire of growing old in Malaysia for his retirement. I asked him if how many years he has been working here and he said it has been 15 years - quite a long one actually. As for me, it has been 6 months only and I don't feel liking it much. Anyway, since he knew that our thank you in the Philippines is, "salamat", he said that to me and I replied back to him "salamat".

I arrived at the French embassy on time and it was 9:30-ish something already. The place was not that big actually but it looked secured and neat. When I got inside, the security officer gave me my queue number and it was 20. When I got inside, there were two windows but the one at the right was the only section in service. The number being served was number 11. I the average serving time would be 5-10 minutes depending on the applicant's papers and type of visa and in between, the visa officer had to call on for those who were there for collection since it was a priority. All the seats were occupied so I had to stand at a corner near the glass door. The place was a bit quiet actually when there came a girl then came two white guys and they started talking which made the place a bit noisy. I did not have any book with me nor anything in particular which interested me to do just to kill the waiting time or to make a bit of fun.... When the woman with badge 13 had her turn and left her seat, I decided to occupy her place. There was this Singaporean who smiled and I smiled back. She then asked me if what I will be doing in France and I told her about it. And then I asked her about hers. After that short conversation, I stood up to stretch my legs and then transferred to another seat. The officer was now serving number 16. I would have enjoyed eavesdropping conversations of the three people as I have told from above but then they were talking in Spanish - so didn't understand them. The kid on my right was playing need for speed in his PSP. The woman beside me was eating something crunchy because I was able to hear everytime she chew the food. I was slowly getting drained and tired and you know what it means, I am sleepy. I then realized I did not take my medication. I then planned what to do next after the French embassy thing. After some few minutes, it was already number 18. Then the service became too fast and when the clock struck at 11 AM it was my number being called upon. I then went to the visa officer. I gestured a smile and then gave my papers. She then checked everything. Since, I only photocopied my pass book transactions, she asked me if I have it, so I gave it to her. The she checked and noted something in my application form. I was actually applying for a multiple entry Schengen Visa even if I am only going to France not really on any other EU member country. Good thing I had a photocopy of my Singapore E-pass as she was trying to verify it as well. Then everything went smoothly and returned some of the documents and ofcourse, my passport and passbook. She told me that I needed to pay 120SGD. She then explained to me that my visa will be processed or verified for 10 days and it would take another two days for them to give me the visa. She also added that I need to bring my insurance policy coverage and info the original one as the one I submitted to them was something photocopied and did not have complete information. The officer then gave me the receipt and she wrote there what I needed to bring on the day that I will be claiming my visa.

I was surprised as there was no interview and so I thought maybe it will be on the day I come back together with my insurance policy. It was 11:30 when I got out of the embassy.

I don't really know if I will be approved of the Schengen visa or anything. As I have asked myself, I am not sure. I know it's going to be exciting but then it's going to be work. The pressure would be on me. I know that they are sending me there because they don't have a choice. I am so negative on this because of the fact that I am not really into this project. If I had a choice, I would have wanted someone to be in my place. But then, it's here already, I need to be back to the B.S. robotics mode and function to my intended programming. And besides that, the paranoid in me is yelling about this AH1N1 because it's just lurking around the corner.


djana said...

wow! you're going to france?! i soooo envy you. i don't seem to have that kind of luck to be sent on another country for a business trip. maybe you're just being negative because of the project. just look on the bright side. you'll be going there for free. and you can use that time to learn a few things about the place, so you'll be at least well informed by the time you go there for a VACATION ;)

xgenesis007 said...

that's the other side ... hope the positive things would be really positive and overshadow the negative ones :)

Jang said...

Gen, OMG!!! I'm soooo happpyyy for you. It's my dream to have a vacation in France^. ^ Damn, your luck is always in abundance…can we exchange places? hehehehe Don’t be negative on your outlook of your project that's just one aspect of having a business trip there. Remember you're very lucky to be chosen for the trip among so many employees in Gemalto=) Anyway, if you really want to be excited and want to feel great about your trip then you have to include me and atepuya...hehehehe

Best of luck on your upcoming trip!!!