Archive for March, 2011

Red tape

in order to get a registered partnership (or, perhaps, a marriage) it turns out we need to submit Beloved’s birth certificate, as well as a declaration (made, somewhat conveniently, in the local consulate) of singlehood.

The birth certificate proves to be complex: it needs to be requested by the person who is on it, or by direct relatives. Doing this by mail is tedious and takes ages. Then, it needs to receive official stamps to make it internationally valid. More mailing to do. Luckily, Beloved’s mother was willing to help us out and sent the documents back and forth until they arrived here.


Now, we have six months to obtain the marriage permit, if we wait longer than that, we need to start over again.

Real estate bubble, eh?

The appraisal came back. And the place has been appraised at 10.000 E less than a year and three months earlier (when I was forced to buy it off the previous owner due to financial reasons). This means that it will be very unlikely to sell the place without taking a loss: not something that I had hoped for.

There goes paying off all my student loans before they start charging interest 😦

On Monday I negotiate with my prospective buyer, see what he says.

Here and There

While Ikea delivered the loot at Beloved’s place, I was at mine to receive the realtor.

He needed to check to see of all 38 boxes were received and unharmed, while I had to show off in the hopes of a favourable appraisal. The boxes we could check off immediately – all there and , the appraisal will take a while longer for the results.

I’ll whip out a screwdriver while waiting for the mail…

Making a new home

Beloved has lived in his place only a few months longer than I’ve lived in mine. So, to make space for me, some changes were needed. We had travelled to Ikea before to pick and choose and get some inspiration. Today, we plundered their shelves.

The previous visit (on a Saturday, like this one – we masochists) went smoothly already. We easily agreed on what was suited for which rooms, which things we needed and which things we only wanted. Today was as pleasant a surprise and I take great pride in saying that we worked together well. We were fast, efficient, and flawless. Even Ikea’s usual charades could not throw us off our resigned-but-cheerful moods. A pile of Billy bookshelves, plenty of other tall and heavy things to maneuver with and of course a few things that were out of stock, none of it managed to make us frown even slightly.

We even had a good time waiting for their delivery service, by coming up with gruesome murder scenarios (executed by the plushy duo of rats we had adopted from the kids’ department) for the yuppie breeders who felt that their success at reproducing three times entitled them to take up half the waiting area with two shopping carts filled with squirmy brats, while not having a single Ikea item on their persons.

Oh well 🙂 We spent a fortune on book shelvage and a handful of bucks on getting it all delivered and felt extremely accomplished for the rest of the day.

Packing up

Yesterday, my colleague drove me home with a pile of boxes in the back of their car. Today, I packed them. Beloved was around as well, to set up my computer so that I could give it away.

All my books are packed. Well, there are two shelves of  ‘books to give away’ that are still in my old place. Other books I have packed to return to my parents, two boxes in total. Those are my children’s books that I hope my brother can one day use for his kids – once he gets them. Other children’s books have already made their way to two cousins. A colleague of mine traded a good shelf of translated fantasy for a bottle of whisky.

Everything else is boxed up and in the basement, ready to be moved once the deal is sealed, the remainder is packed and the truck is rented.

I’ve lived in this house for years. It was (well, is still) mine. I got the mortgage on my own income, got my own insurances, everything. And now I’m dismantling the place.

Weird and a little sad. Still, I look forward to living with the Beloved. It will be hard work to call his place my home, but we’ll get there.

Now what?

We got out facts straight, this time. There won’t be any leaving this country until Beloved gets dual citizenship, because a possible return would then mean starting the immigration process here all over again. We’d toss out the permanent residency that he has built up, and would be forced to comply with very strict regulations – and who know how tight they may have become by then.

From the date of a partnership cerwmony, the term for him to obtain dual citizenship would be about a year.

This lead Beloved to ask me during one of the many night time conversations we’ve recently had, if it were not better to stop scrambling to get a ceremony done as fast as possible (we were aiming for late May). He confessed that he, at least, felt that rushing these things wasn’t beneficial. I agree and told him so.

That seems such a straightforward statement, and it belies some of the complexities. I could hear (or perhaps project?) that he was really cautious about bringing it up. Almost as if he was afraid I’d get angry. I suppose it makes sense. I wonder how many men told their ladies (or the other way around, right?) that they wanted to postpone <insert name of ceremony> and pulled it off without the whole thing escalating into an argument or a tearful scene. True, I did feel a little twinge of disappointment when he brought it up (of which I have felt free not to inform him). I wonder why.

We have a little breathing room, it seems.

The first of the paperwork

Today, the beloved and I moved in. On paper, at least. The local council has registered me as a resident, but the first box of books still needs to be moved. I still have my apartment, but the first viewer has come and seemed positive about the place.

Let’s see how things turn out.

One announcement, two announcements

It was time to inform a few important people of our progress and our decisions. We went to my parents, under the guise of asking some questions about mortgages and the sale of my house. Those questions were asked, but we also laid out our plans and the time line that the immigration expert gave us.

Near the end of the visit my mother looked up and asked: “This is an official sort of visit, isn’t it?” We slowly nodded a little, and received their blessing for our plans. Later this weekend we informed the beloved’s parents too. Over the phone, due to the distance, but they, too, immediately congratulated us on the decisions that we shared with them.

That being settled, we went over the tales of the immigration expert. The time limit of three years before applying for naturalization did not make sense to me: I had read of it in different scenarios, ones that don’t apply to us. And so I checked my network and found out that a relative of a colleague works in the National Immigration Service. She was able to quote several law texts that naturalization policy is based on, none of them mentioning any three year term after marriage or a civil union.

A third opinion, too, was very clear: apply for naturalization the day after the ceremony, and you’l be allowed to keep both nationalities.

We breathed a sigh of relief and considered ourselves lucky to be critical of our expert. On to the next step!