Sunday, April 19, 2009

Visa stamped

Yesterday we got back ours passport with the Australian Visa stamped. It was awesome to receive the envelope from DHL and find inside a smaller postcard sized white envelope, with ours names handwritten with the passport inside.
Here is a picture of it.
Passports and Envelope.

Australian visa sample

Moving to meaningful subjects, how to send the passports to the Australian Embassy. Well, for us in Venezuela is kind of messy because isn’t allowed to send personal documents (as credit cards, passports, identifications or registrations) in any post office. We had to go to the main office located in “La Californía” (full address at the bottom of the post), then pay for the fees and everything else and include a polite request with the passport’s number, grant number and full passport holder names.
The content of the request letter was something like:
Australian Embassy.
Santiago de Chile.
In the present letter we, [you names in here which should be first applicant names and rest of the family members], [your nationality here], holders of the passports [first applicant passport number, same order as names passport numbers], formally request to you the permanent visa ext 175 stamped in each of our passports as specified in the grant letter attached to this document. Once stamped, we would like you to send it to [full address here] to be charged on destination.
In addition to the information provided here, you can find at the bottom our phone numbers and email addresses to communicate on any event, issue or update.
With nothing else to say and waiting cheerfully our documents back we salute you.
Best regards.
Rod & Kat.
[Passport numbers]
[Phone numbers]
[Email Addresses]

Finally, the passports round trip took 7 days but we couldn't pick it up till this Friday.
Till next time

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Since March 19 a couple of things have been an emotional roller coaster, especially when I start to think of beautiful things such as our (Venezuelans) natural places, weather, food, mates, family and the list goes on and on...
So I tried to get out of focus every now and then, hit youtube and start watching bunch of videos related to Australia, series, movie trailers... and all of the sudden I get to the “up” movie trailer (Pixar upcoming CG movie – which looks more than cool) and I started wonder... If I could, by any chance, get one job spot in Pixar once in Australia... Who knows, uh?
Then I watch one “behind the scenes” related trailer and decided to watch it... next to it, my heart went pumping hard, beating with emotion and at the same time sadness...
Maybe, if you watch the trailer you will understand a bit more...

Just as a note... THE NOTE... Venezuela isn’t that “very remote and weird place in South America” but the Amazonas is. And it was also weird that one of the 7th natural wonder is one of those places “you would never know it existed”... Turns out Venezuela has one of the oldest grounds on earth (1.7 billion year old) called “mácizo guayanes – escudo guayanes” (or Guyana Shield) being the base of the South American plate, underlying in Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Suriname and Guiana. And as part of this formation, the highest water fall on earth with more than 970mts of free water fall.. Angel Falls.
If you ask me what I am leaving behind in order to get access for a better future... I will be leaving very few things because the meaningful things are kept in my heart (my family, my mates, my memories). But not going to deny it, it hurts.
Till next time.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Couple of days later the grant, I found myself thinking about the trauma involved in the migratory process and its aftermath. For me it was (seriously) easiest and less traumatic than many in my surroundings and I can’t held to make a comparison of the process when I took the challenge against those with this process ahead and the conclusion is somehow disappointing.

Why or How disappointing?

Let’s begin with the current “filter” applied by DIAC to new applicants. At the moment those within CSL (Critical Skilled List), regional / family / work sponsorship has the upright, as a move to contain the collision of world financial crisis on Australia… How? Avoiding unemployment and unnecessary exchange of expensive local workers with incoming cheap labor hands proceeding from people overseas.
Next higher English requirements, to improve your chances of success in your new life.

Then rocket high airfare prices which consumes many of our resources to move to Australia, direct consequence of the unbalanced price of petrol (at the moment a shadow of what it was, but the prices didn’t came back to earth).

Finally (and this one applies only to those in Venezuela) our monetary exchange control, which forbid us to freely exchange our savings into American’s or Australian’s dollars, making us apply for disfavoring monetary arrangements losing two thirds of our saving in the process.

So what?

Well, if you want to apply for a visa (or is your dream to move to Australia) one thing is for sure… You got to have hell of an assessment and planning in order to make it come true; get ready for its financial implications and long term processing. And don’t take the English for granted (if isn’t your language or birth) if you are planning to move down under you got to be native on its use.
Leave comments.
Cheers and till the next post.