Yes, the cat is indeed out of the bag. No, I am NOT gay, although I frequently exhibit such behaviour.
The big news is that I found a new job and started today. I’ve been keeping it low profile since the uncertainty of the terrible Irish bureaucracy was still upon me. Not anymore – I hold in my hands an employment permit for the next two years!
I am now working for an Irish company writing funky life insurance products and selling it in Italy. Because of that about 60% of the office people are Italian and I already downloaded Pimsleur Italian (actually it was on the shared drive at work for all non-Italians to use!) and am working on my Godfather accent.
To tell you a bit about the pain in the rear that was the work permit application process let me tell you that I am seriously starting to consider that I have superpowers. It can also be because I have been watching Heroes non-stop, waiting for the Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment (DETE) to talk to me.
I applied for the Green Card (the local version of the employment permit, which is equivalent to the Employment Permit (note the CAPS), but also gives you the “fast track to the Irish residency”) on November 2, 2009 knowing full-well that it takes them around 4 weeks to process this thing. I was due to start on the 23rd of November. On the 17th of November I received a rejection letter telling me that I am not cool enough and that my nose was disproportionate to my face when I was a teenager and that I am a lousy poker player. Nothing new. Wait, what? I am good at poker, my nose is all matching my face now and some people consider me cool (hey dude!). PLUS, I need to have this darned permit in three business days otherwise I am, hmm, how can I keep this PG, IN TROUBLE!
I submit the appeal letter within hours of receiving the rejection letter and call the call centre to follow up, only to find out that it takes 8 WEEKS FOR MY LETTER TO REACH THE APPEALS OFFICER!!! Panic Mode, ON! It is now two business days until I need to have the permit otherwise I am in trouble. I run to DETE and harass the security guard, who in his helpless strive for survival from my death grip cries for help to the lady descending the stairs and apparently going to lunch. I practice my mind control tricks and charm the bejesus out of her and she gives me the two secret numbers, the numbers that noone in Ireland knows, to call and get my life back on track. I call and VOILA, one day later I have the permit! Mind you, it’s not the Green Card, it’s the Employment Permit. Everything’s the same, but no “fast track to Irish residency”. I will cry many nights over this!
I should also mention that a few weeks prior to that, when I realized that I may not have enough time to get the permit and thanks to the suggestion from my recruiter, I decided to contact a local MP, or TD, as they are called here. This dude’s assistant gets back to me and has a meeting with me, offering to write a stern letter to the DETE, telling them to do as I say. This was not necessary, but my hat goes off to the dude’s assistant dude, who was very helpful and understanding!!! Thanks, sincerely!
So here I am, one day in! Expect many tweets relating to this!