Thursday, December 18, 2008

Vamos a cantar con los ninos espanoles

So having a kind of presentiment that it can be only the beginning we decided not to waste time and the same evening went to Kiev again. As we wanted to speak Spanish with the Chief of visa section but to tell the truth we weren’t absolutely sure that our knowledge of it would be enough to explain our “unusual case” we printed out from all pages about EVS from Spanish site of Youth in Action Program. The next day at 5 o’clock as usual waiting for the dawn we were reading about “intercambios culturales”, “ciudadania activa” and “SVE es un programa para todos”:) and trying to memorize some useful words.

The next interesting rule of Spanish Embassy in Kiev is that for having interview you have to present at 8 a.m. a copy of your visa application form and then wait till 1 p.m. But we were lucky enough and there was no rain so we could take a walk. Returning at 1 p.m. we discovered one more interesting fact – you can’t enter the Embassy with a bag; the security guard suggested that we could leave our bags in the car. But as we hadn’t the key to any car standing near the Embassy we had to look for another solution. Fortunately there are plenty of small agencies offering different services including “luggage office”.

So finally we were ready for the interview. We came in together as we had the same case and at once started speaking Spanish. Without false modesty let us tell that the Chief was impressed (so were we ) and he even asked where we learnt it:))). Though the Chief of visa section was very nice and kind and it seemed that he really wanted to help us somehow , it was evident that he saw our documents for the first time. So after explaining him what all this pile of documents (budget, agreements with NA, party agreements, etc) was for, he asked what is EVS and what we were going to do in Spain. So we told about volunteering, working in socio-cultural centers and teaching foreign languages to Spanish children and so on. Then there was just great question: “Does European Commission know about EVS?” We suggested that the Commission at least heard about it just because of a simple fact that it finances the program. The Chief asked us once again what we will be doing with children. So as it was already said about teaching languages I needed to answer something else and the only Spanish verb that came to my mind was “Cantar”. So was the answer… The Chief looked surprised: - Saben las canciones espanoles? – Si.
We even wanted to sing something to prove it but there were only two songs in Spanish that we remembered: “Para bailar la mamba” which wasn’t actually Spanish and “Besame mucho”, but we didn’t dare to sing it to the Chief of visa section of the Embassy :)).

So we came to the most interesting part of our interview, the Chief had to decide which visa we need. He did a very simple and genius thing, he went to the internet site of European Commission and read about EVS. Than he came back to us and solemnly declared that we didn’t need working visa (we had a sigh of relieve…) but a non-lucrative one. And there were some documents that we need to get for it (… relieve turned into another bad presentiment:): we need to get a certificate from the police and put an appostille on it and a medical certificate with the stamps of 25 doctors, 5 clinics, then of the regional health authorities, Ministry of Health and one more appostille. Than it should be translated in Spanish and the Embassy should approve it.

He finished his long speech, looked at us and re-started it, but in Russian. Maybe we looked perplexed, but not because of language difficulties; we just imagined visits to three ministries and one more detail - we heart the word “appostille” for the first time and had no idea who can put it. So after listening to the same thing in Russian and being completely lost I could only ask: “Que vamos a hacer ahora?”… :)
The answer was simple – go to Kharkiv, try to do all the certificates as soon as possible and come to the Embassy again.
The rest of the day we spent running between Ministry of Health and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, finding out what is appostille and how we can manage it in the shortest time. And we left Kiev with a strong belief that impossible is nothing and more or less clear plan for the next week.


Marishka said...

hmmm.... what can I say... GOOD LUCK GIRLS!!! We believe in you!

friddel said...

Hi Olena (the blond^^)
I'm sorry I'm a bit chaotic ^^ : I lost your e-mail, can't find it anywhere. I don't have a hairdryer, so there is none in our flat but don't worry if you don't have enough space in your suitcase we can buy one in Santiago. If you have more questions about the flat or something else write again and if I hopefully don't lose your e-mail again I will answer per mail.
See you soon^^