Monday, October 14, 2013

GETTING MY PASSPORT RENEWED

"If you can wait
and not be tired by waiting"
"If"
~ Rudyard Kipling ~

10:30 a.m. - I was back at KDN Complex at Setia Tropika again and this time to get my passport renewed at the Immigration Department. I was told by the officers at the counter on the ground floor they had run out of numbers so I had to come back at 2:00 p.m. I decided to go Tesco first to buy some things and get back later. Some people came as early as 7:00 a.m. to queue and I thought I could still stand a chance to get in as today should be a working day (except for some teachers) but I was wrong.

12:45 p.m. - It was a smart decision to actually come much earlier. When I went to the counter, a small piece of yellow note was given. As it was still early, I went to the "surau" (praying room) located on the 7th floor.

1:10 p.m. - When I left the counter, the place was clear but after prayer, there was already a very long line forming. Where did all these people come from? Not long after that, the RELA officer came and told everybody that only those who were given the yellow slip would be given the tickets with the number of your turn to be served. They could only entertain 200 customers for the afternoon session and the line started to move (thank God!) when some disappointed people had to leave.

1:55 p.m. - The counter was opened after lunch break. I got number 38 which was not that bad. And I had my book with me to keep me company. People were rushing to the lifts, something typical of Malaysians these days, to get to the third floor right after that.

2:20 p.m. - My number was called and everything was done in less than 5 minutes. I was instructed to wait to go to the next counter to get the payment receipt and my identity card.

2:40 p.m. ~ My number was called again. After getting the receipt, I was told to hand in the piece of paper at 3:45 p.m. at the other counter. I had about 1 hour to kill and I needed to get away from the crowd for oxygen so I chose just to sit under one of the gazebos outside the building.

3:45 p.m. ~ After putting in the receipt in the plastic box at the counter, I had to wait again. And not long after that, my brand new passport was handed over to me. I left the building by 4:00 p.m. and that was quite a relief to get everything done within 2 hours.

cut vs. uncut
Without a doubt, PATIENCE is very important when you go for counter service like this. Your turn will come and you just have to wait. Other than that, from my observation, there would not be a big crowd at the department if people do not bring along the whole family members who are not involved. I felt like slapping some kids who were running around the place and pressing the lift buttons and the parents were nowhere to be seen. Get yourself a book/magazine/newspaper to read. Many people have smartphones but they will be busy playing candy crush or updating their status on Facebook.

So goodbye to my old passport. It has been five wonderful years together (almost) and thank you for taking me to some places that I have never dreamed of going.