13 septembre, 2007

Prefecture B*****s

Just so you know-I am not at all a huge swearer except when very, VERY mad and/or frustrated, so forgive any vulgarity that might come out on this post, but a lady needs to vent. On second thought, I'll go back after I'm done writing and sensor, so you won't have to avert your eyes.

OMG, I am BLEEPING fuming mad. I KNEW that this was all going along too BLEEPING well. I had been pleasantly surprised when the lady at the Prefecture a few weeks ago was a)nice b)helpful and c) didn't say that changing from an assistant to a student CDS would be a problem. That *&#$@ was wrong. I went today and waited for an hour eventhough I had a BLEEPING RDV because the computer system was "broken", so they had "lost" all of the names of the people with RDVs. I had been excited, however, because the same lady who told me changing CDS would be fine was there at the guichet. BLEEPING awesome. She must have been new because she got overwhelmed or something at one point and only the two guichets where you have to have a number were left. One was the lady I will soon discuss and the other was a woman I recognized and confirmed from watching her as a BLEEPING *&#$@. So, since my nice lady had hit the road, I waited for my number to come up(since I know France and its' ways, I had taken a number as well just in case something happened with the RDV.)

As my number approached, a new lady that looked stern, but nice enough came up to the window where my nice lady had previously been. So, those of us with RDVs lined up and I was third in line for that window, but my number for the other guichets was coming...closer and closer. Then, there was only one person in front of me at the RDV window and I was one number away at the guichets. I had to make the quick decision: if my number came up before the person in front of me finished, should I go? I decided that lady looked nice(WRONG) at the number window and that since it wasn't technically a first time CDS, but rather a renewal of sorts, I'm maybe supposed to go to the other guichet anyways.

So, I head to this lady I've never seen before at the number window and tell her I'm there to change my CDS from an Assistant to a Student and hand my CDS over to her. Oh no, Madame, you need to go back to the US and get a visa. What was that, f***face?(No, I didn't really say that, but I would have liked to!) I tried to remain calm, I was going to fight it out with this *&#$@ if she made me. I explained my situation...I had a visa to come as an assistant, my CDS lasts til the end of September, I signed up at the IUFM/Fac, etc etc. She basically said that it doesn't matter because it's the loi that you have to first have a visa blah, blah, nonsense, blah, blah. I protested that I had been here recently and her colleague that was there today told me it would be fine. She said non, it is not. I said, well how the F am I supposed to do this when my classes start TOMORROW? She said, go back to the states or go to the French Consulate in Belgium or Spain(???) The anger and frustration had been building and building and that's when I could take no more, so despite my resistance, the waterworks came on full force. That *&#$@ didn't even blink an eye. I said again that I was told by her COLLEAGUE that everything was fine, comment ca se fait? Oh, she made an erreur, my colleague. I repeated again that my courses start TO-MOR-ROW. She said nothing.

The only thing I can say about this BLEEPING *&#$@ is that she did go and talk to her *&#$@ of a colleague to confirm she was right and didn't press the button for the next person or wash her hands of me right away like they normally would. She did "listen", I guess. And she did "help" by saying I could go to Belgium or Spain. Gee, thanks. Lemme just spend more money to probably get turned down by some Belges or some Espagnols. Grrreat. Plus, even though she did seem to hear what I was saying and did actually respond, I know she didn't really care. I was just another pile of paperwork to her, not even a real human being. The fact that tears were streaming down my face and I was trying to still rationally explain everything? Well, I was proud of me for even being able to speak, but she could have cared less. And, I'm sorry, but if I had been on her side of that ridiculous glass wall, I would have felt bad for the person. I would have a least had the decency to mutter even a tiny, little desolee. Her? She might as well have been a some sort of French robot programmed to memorize and spit out information.

I am at a loss as to what to do. I am, however, not surprised as I knew things the whole time I've been here had gone too well with no major worries in terms of admin stuff. That's not normal here. I am beyond overwhelmed with the situation at hand and frustrated to a point of anger at France and its' ways and sadness at the thought of this all falling through. Any sympathy, empathy or words of advice are greatly appreciated. For now, I am off to look into this whole Belgium/Spain theory. Do any of you think that would actually be possible? Also, I'm planning on going back tomorrow and happening upon someone who either does/does not know the rules depending on what those rules even really are. ARG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Frustratedly/angrily/sadly/bleepingly yours,

7 commentaires:

nicole a dit…

oh leah...i'm just so frustrated for you. i have no idea what will work, but something has got to. but i do vote, that we find some symbolic gift to give the prefecture. you know, something symbolic of the 3 ring circus they have created with all their jumping through stupid hoops. my good thoughts are with you and good luck!

Karina a dit…

She's wrong. I've never once gone back to the States as long as I renewed before my CdS expired (even changing status etc). Just go back again and talk to the nice lady, don't let her get to you.
You're right, she's wrong. If you end up with her again just request to see her boss and say you're not leaving until it happens the way it's supposed to.
Stick to your guns, you're right :)

Antipodeesse a dit…

Oh honey, I'm afraid I have no help to give whatsoever. But Karina sure sounds like she knows what she's talking about!

(btw, I told my Mum I would make my blog private and only
invite my friends & family to read it. But to tell
the truth I invited many of my regular readers, which
is why I switched off comments... was afraid Mum would
read all the comments from strangers and feel
deceived... I'm still wrestling with my conscience
about that....)

Crystal a dit…

I think Karina is right too...can you find anything on the net to help prove your case? I did that with my driver's license (guy at the prefecture said I couldnt exchange my canadian one for a french one, but i found the info on the canadian gov't site and brought it in to show him he was wrong)...sometimes the people at the pref dont actually know everything and if they dont know the answer they just say no without confirming. Get all the documents you can to support what Karina has said etc and go back in there.

Im really sorry this is happening to you. I know how it feels because I've been down this road before for my CDS. The pref people are BLEEPING idiots and you can get one answer one day and a completely different one the next day. I hope people start to realize what a sham this goddamn country is!!!

PS. I live like 15 min from the belgium border...if you need to go to the pref, maybe we can work something out and go together :)

Good luck chica, I'm eagerly awaiting an update :)

Leah a dit…

Nicole-Don't I know it! All the paperwork they say you need and then sometimes you do, sometimes you don't. Plus, they treat you like trash. Maybe I should bring them a smelly bag of garbage as an offering in that case?

Karina-Thanks for the info. I know I've heard of people doing it before, but maybe they changed the law? I dunno. More likely they are just plain wrong like you said.

Antipo-That's ok, just having your comment made me feel better! Also, now I understand about your "secret" blog. I dunno how I would remedy that either because I would feel the same way about my mum and hurting her feelings. There must be some solution that a net-savvy person would know...but I sure don't!

Crystal-I can't seem to find anything on the prefecture's site that would work to print out as proof and I'm heading there this afternoon, so I don't think I will in time either. But, it's a good idea for potential future visits(which will hopefull NOT be the case.) Also, I think the Belgium thing is BS, I don't think she knew what she was talking about, but thanks for the offer and you'll be the first one I contact if I have to randomly go to Belgium! Maybe next time they'll say Zimbabwe...who knows?

Jennie a dit…

Those bitches (here in Annecy, not where you live, but still...) tried to tell me the same thing when I needed to change from a travailleur temporaire to a visiteur CDS. They kept insisting that I go back to the US and get a new visa. They claimed it was a new rule that Sarkozy put into effect, but it's not really a new rule. I just went back later and talked to someone different and explained that I was PACSed to a Frenchman and my current card was not expired, so I knew I had every right to change the status.

It is entirely possible to change the status of your CDS. As long as it's not expired, you should be able to do it. I've done it, Karina has done it, others on the assistantsinfrance.com board have done it (assistant to student CDS too!)

I'll try to find something online to prove it. I know how frustrating this is!

Good luck!

Gem a dit…

Good luck! I think every foreigner has a story like this one to tell about the Prefecture. I know that I considered it a good trip if I didn't cry afterwards (I think that happened... ONCE in the whole time I was in France). I once spent almost an entire week getting to the Prefecture at 7am (when the parking lot opened). Arrgh it's making me angry just to think about it! Bon courage!!