Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Moving (Part 11 of X): Bureaucracy Is An Unwonderful Thing

Yeah, we all know that and love to gripe about it, but when you're trying to establish an identity in a new country—'new' for us meaning returning after 20+ years of absence—the hoops you have to jump through to do even simple things (registering your newly purchased vehicle; getting a mobile phone 'plan', as opposed to using good-old Prepay; and so on) are strangely convoluted and arranged in what almost is a classic Catch-22 situation. I could imagine a set of circumstances—say if you went somewhere in Australia and knew nobody, where it could take you the best part of half a year to get all these things into order and/or set up.

Several times, during yesterday and last week, the work 'Kafkaesque' came to my mind and lips. I can understand the 'why' of the hoops, and I suspect that in other parts of the world the situation is far worse. Still, it makes me yearn for the good old days. But then I run into people who are still living in the good old days and unable or unwilling to adapt to this aspect or that of the current world, and I recite my mantra:

What is, is. Make the best of it; and maybe what will be will be more to your liking.

Or, as Ed might have said, what 'should be' and 'what is' might be the same more often they they usually tend to be.

Still, often 'what is' is also a Papa India Tango Alpha.

Major to-do items left on my agenda for this week in Brisbane: finish the hoop-jumping exercises to get car; find place to live.

Everything else has pretty much fallen into place, with even the house-selling delays in NZ turning out to be ultimately of benefit, financially, despite their vexatious nature. And the car sold yesterday, so that's good, too. One car sold; another bought.

And, in the things that truly matter, our friends here—most of whom we've known for like 'forever'—have been a very positive experience; as I had hoped they would be. They were there and are continuing to be there when we need them. I have learned to appreciate that kind of friendship over a lot of the other variations upon the theme. We owe them and we won't forget.

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