Friday, October 17, 2008

Hmm, good things and bad things.

Oops, I just published a title. Oh well, it can be edited, and it shall be!

What's been happening? Well, we tried to apply for visas to the US because we were supposed to play a festival in New York next week. The tour has kind of been plagued with issues from the beginning; our friends from Perth The Silents were supposed to play but couldn't get there, then one of our shows got cancelled, so we couldn't afford to bring our manager Heath with us.

Anyway, as you would imagine, the bureaucracy that you have to deal with is pretty intense, so there's this company that helps out, in an effort to encourage foreign bands to tour there. They were really helpful, gave us step by step guides to all the forms and regulations, and told us that this kind of performing visa is usually rushed through.
Unfortunately, the US government doesn't fast track Indonesian Muslims that have visited Mecca a few years ago - who would have thought? I guess it was always a possibility, but somehow I forgot to worry about it, I was too busy worrying about my own paperwork. So, we're not going to New York, there's no way they'll get Andy's visa through in time. But never mind, we'll get the visa eventually and play some other shows there instead!

It's probably for the best, it allows us to concentrate on getting jobs and bank accounts, and generally settling in here a bit more... Ross and I paid for this company that helps you get all that stuff organised, and they've booked us appointments for national insurance numbers and bank accounts. However, I'm here on my Icelandic passport and will be working under that name. So, you'd think I should get the account under that name, right?
Um, apparently, wrong. Because of the shenanigans between the UK and Iceland, Fastrack recommends that I get an account in my Australian name. Because, being Icelandic, I must have been pretty heavily involved in the running of the country and it's financial policy, and therefore all the trouble that was caused. Sorry. Promise I won't do it again. Can I please have an account now?

It's crazy, it's exactly like Maja's post where ordinary people are blamed for their whole country's mistakes. And in the case of Iceland, I'm beginning to be convinced that it's not even entirely their fault, let alone mine.

Hmm, I just realised my two stories are kind of similar. Interesting. Anyway, although neither of them are heartwarming, life is not bad. The sun is shining, there's a colourful street market outside of my window, and Ross just drew me a picture of a frog prince. I called my Mum and Dad today, they sound pretty happy and relaxed, and are cooking a barbecue tonight. Starting to miss Australia, but not in a painful way, just a nice nostalgic way.

And Kristinn sent me this photo. If anyone's ever feeling down...



Northern musings said...

won´t it cause problems opening up an account in your Aussie name when your Aussie you is not allowed to work there? What was their take on that? All very strange and difficult. So how much do you have to pay this company for providing this service?

Northern musings said...

Also, I love that photo of you guys and the street pic looks like something straight out of Eastenders...

olga said...

Yes, it will cause problems, that's what I said to them, but they said to go anyway... I think I'll just get an account on my own, I'll have enough proof for it once I get my Icelandic passport back!
And how much we paid? $200! That was supposed to include bank accounts and National Insurance Numbers and phones and other helpful stuff, but it's not anything we couldn't have done on our own! And if we needed help, we found a company here in the UK that does it all for 25 quid. Dammit, I hate being ripped off!
Oh well, you live and learn!

Anna said...

I'm not sure what blogger lets you do, but here's how normal html coding works. To do links:

(a href=url)clickable text(/a)

Just make the brackets into the pointy kind. These kind: <. I'll check if it works.

Puppies and kittens are pretty much excellent.

Maja said...

It's disgusting how much xenophobia there is in the world today, particularly against people from muslim dominated countries, when supposedly everything is becoming so global. It makes me angry that it's acceptable for governments to be so blatantly racist these days. Why do we allow it?

Oh well never mind about the visas, patience will pay off, I'm sure!

Bridget said...

England is fucked.

you're lucky if you don't get fungus. I never got a bank account. I was refused 3 times and thus was taxed at 40% of my earnings which were tiny to begin with. Aww governments suck. Everyone is sick at home here again. its really really warm though.even in my house which is usually freezing all the time! yay!

olga said...

Yeah, it's insane that it's accepted and allowed! I guess he hasn't actually been denied a visa, it's just going to take longer to process...

Aw, Bridget! Man 40%? I'm really going to get that bank account, no matter whose name it is!
I'm glad it's getting warmer there, it's just starting to get cold here now. There's still a bit of sunshine though! And I'm still fungus free, but I'll keep you updated.