Friday, July 29, 2011

Getting my ID card.

I made my Emirates ID a couple of weeks ago.  My husband informed me the night before that we had to leave home and reach the registration office by 6, register our name with the security guard, go back home and come back at 9 am when the office is opened. 

The Ruwais office it seems, would only take in at most a number of twenty applicants per day hence the booking as early as 6 am.  Can you just imagine these people working from 9 to 12 something, come back after lunch and sit on their bottom some more until 4, doing nothing because they would only take in 20 applications for an EIDA card and that made me instantly remember how I had constantly ranted about the poor government service in Malaysia..how I wish I had not!  Arriving the office at 600 without them kids, there was already a long queue but counting, we were still safe being placed at number 15.  After waiting for almost an hour, the security finally decided to come for duty and informed us that the branch does not provide any typing services for the forms. It is a requirement, I was told, that forms have to be typewritten and only an agent could  do that for you..hampeh.

As our children were left behind, sleeping soundly at home under the supervision of my eldest, we decided to head straight for Gayathi, a town about 30 minutes away.   We went to the registration office and were told that they too did not provide typing services.  Thence, we had to scour the town..well...it wasn't big anyways and there we managed to find a typing office that was opened as early as 730.  When typing was done, we made our way to the registration office to proceed with matters but were frustrated when told that the only lady officer to handle female applicants was away that day. Whaattt??? Does that mean in the whole town of Gayathi, they had only allocated ONE lady officer..grrr..there goes my precious time. 

Since we were already in Gayathi, we went to the hospital to take my medical report that I did earlier and there it was, standing alone in the middle of the hospital, so desolate, so empty, another registration branch!  Trying my luck, I entered the building and was given great  news that I was able to do my eida (ID) card application there! Hooraaayyy...

I realized that I was the only applicant in an office of about 10 officers all on their blackberries. WOW..this is a dream place..to get paid salary for being on my blackberry..(hey, that rhymes!) gaji buta eh..? I was called to process my application and had to scan all ten of my fingers for prints. I knew there would be problems pertaining this.  Suffering from excema specifically on my fingers, there was no way in heavens were they going to get a decent print of my fingers.  


What normally would take a normal person with silky smooth henna painted fingers less than 20 minutes, took me a whooping one hour!  Out of the ten fingers I have, only two prints were accepted.  The officer tried and tried and tried relentlessly despite me telling her of my "disorder" but she chose to ignore me and kept giving me creamler, sanitizerla, told me to wipe my fingers dryler..and kept on telling me to relax, just relax..just relax..just relax..Now, how could I relax when I felt so violated with her pushing and pressing my fingers against that scanning thingy in so many different positions???  Since she was a nice lady with a pair of beautiful eyes, I decided to act stupid.  Naam..naam or hasana..hasana was my only reply.

After many many attempts failed with the fingerprints projected on the computer rejected, a senior officer decided to bypass the system and my excemaed fingers were finally given recognition.  She then decided to joke around and called me the one without fingerprints...hahaha. funny Arab! To which I retorted, " I could get away with crimes coz you wont be able to identify me, hahahah"  I was the only one laughing...not funny, Malayzian!

The last process was to take a picture of me for the card and I was bewildered. I thought that we had to provide a picture of ourselves..  Amat apiz never told me anything about taking a picture..I went barefaced..no makeup at all and to think of wearing the shirt I slept in..I looked so ..so..yucks !!! That is almost as big a crime as being blasphemous... relaying this concern to the ladies, I managed to make them laugh..funny afterall Malayzian..no??  They took a picture of me anyways with a goofed up looking face. Wouldn't you be if you had no makeup and for the fact that your fingers were tortured?  The damage was done.

Well heck, even if I were beautiful at all but being Asian, these Arabs could not care about you..beautiful or not, funny looking with distorted fingerprints, I managed to get my EIDA card. Now..just waiting for it to reach my doorsteps..! Syukran.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Meltdown...

I was busy scrubbing the stove when this faint scent of burnt plastic came seeping through my nostrils.  I headed outside to check the computer as my kids were there accessing their FB. I had thought that the smell came from somewhere around that area but nothing was wrong with the computer or the plugs surrounding it.

I went back to the kitchen to resume my task of scrubbing and cleaning but the moment I passed the dining room, this burning odor had become stronger so I dashed to the kitchen.  And there it was, the moment I stepped into the kitchen I could see that the air-cond control unit was on fire!  Not fire like a real firelah...not the kind of fire worthy of the fire brigade's attention with the kabooooom effect but it was enough to make my already small heart smaller!  The fire was like one coming from a lighted match but because it was inside the aircond unit with its little wires and the fact that smoke had already welcomed its own presence in my kitchen,  mere thoughts of my house exploding like those you see on the television were rushing through my head.

Instantly I called my husband who was on night shift and told him, "Babes, the kitchen is on fire..".   Whatla... the kitchen is on fire and what am I doing calling him when I am supposed to be a messed up lunatic!  Of course he went frantic, no ler..he was digesting what he had just heard..wouldn't you when your loonie wife calls to say the kitchen is on fire but you could hear your kids giggling behind?  Eventually, I brought down the drama and told him what was happening.  Yes, there was a small spark and just soooooome smoke coming out from the thermostat, not to forget the plastic was melting..yessiree..m.e.l.t.i.n.g.. and of course, the temperature on the screen was showing at 56 deg cel.. Therefore, it is reasonably justified to act all freaked out, right..???  

Five minutes later..Mr Wong,  a fellow Malaysian who lives three buildings away comes to check up on the house.  Upon seeing the so-called burning thingy, he was pretty worried!  (Yeah..tell me about it...all my Maggi mee, Malaysian curry powder, my sos tiram and chilli sauce, my TUPPERWARE..oh my TUPPERWARE...all blown up into tiny particles...) He, in turn, helped me by calling the emergency unit and reported our situation.  Bless that man.  Five minutes after that, came a tall handsome Arab man who claims to be security. It seems that during emergency situations after office hours, security would come to check and confirm how pressing one's situation is..  The man looks at the thing and calls maintenance who come 10 minutes afterwards.  Haiya...All this calling here and there...if the sparks were as active as a cancer cell, my whole house would have been blown to pieces!

Maintenance came but were not all too worried.  Since this happened on a Thursday night, they couldn't replace the thermostat as shops have already closed.  Hence to ease my worries, they turned off the main switch for that particular thermostat.  Well, since the house is already like an icebox itself,  to have the kitchen air-cond down wasn't a big deal.  Pheeeeeewww....what a relief!  There it is...my first crisis in Ruwais.

Off limits..you see the melted spot?? You see it...