Yesterday I tweeted about a secret mission to Eindhoven. Today I shall revel why it was so secret: for 2 days I was an illegal immigrant. (Gasp)
Despite carrying on a dubious family tradition, this was not nearly as interesting as that sounds. I had to re-apply for my residency card renewal in June after my first application went astray. Apparently I was suppose to mail it to Zwolle, not Eindhoven. When I received notice that my application had been received (and would be processed after I paid the 288 euro fee), my old card only have about a week to go. That wasn’t so bad. It was the knowledge that they had 6 months to decide weather to approve me or not that was the problem.
A few weeks with a lapsed card may not have been so bad (it would have stressed me out, but it’s not like I do anything to draw attention to myself), but 6 months would have restricted my ability to do anything that requires ID, travel outside the Netherlands, and would have resulted in awkward questions if someone official needed my ID. While being deported would certainly make an interesting end to this blog, I’m not willing to go that far for you all.
Fortunately there is an easy fix to tide me over. I got an appointment with the IND and they issued me a temporary residency sticker for my passport good for another 6 months. This sticker is basically the same one I had to obtain when we first moved to the Netherlands and it states that I can live and work here under the same conditions that we have been until my official renewal application has been approved.
It is not, however a travel visa, and if I want to go abroad and come back into the Netherlands I’ll have to obtain one for 40 euros. Since we have no travel plans at this time, that should be no problem. The gentleman I spoke with at the IND said that he guesstimated my application would be approved in 2 months, so I’ll just have to hold out until then.