Today Marco and I went to our scheduled appointment (afspraak) with the IND to set up my VVR (permanent residency). This also included a meeting with the GBA (…Gemeentelijke Basisadministratie persoonsgegevens!), otherwise known as the department who keeps tabs on every single citizen of the Hague. You are required to register.
The appointment was at 9AM, so we left the apartment around 8AM and took tram 17 to the Statenplein tram stop. (The street we wanted was Stadhoudersplantsoen, 24. Yeah. Who needs to use the space bar.)
gemeente museum in the Hague, near our appointment building. (gemeente = municipality)
The appointment went rather smoothly – as mentioned, we first met with an official from the GBA and I turned over one of the official copies of my birth certificate (don’t worry mom – a long version, not the fragile original version!). Then we waited a few minutes for the IND appointment and got that sorted. I had my fingerprint taken digitally, which was interesting because the machine was rather finicky. Eventually they ended up just trying the index finger on my left hand instead of my right, and it worked a bit quicker.
Then my fingerprint was taken again at a different window, and then it was done. The VVR should arrive in 6 to 7 weeks. I hope!
This morning Marco and I woke up early (ish!) as we wanted to call IND before the wait times increased. It is 10 cents per minute, so… But when Marco called at 9AM he heard a recorded message that the IND had technical difficulties and to call back later. Long story short, he was able to get a hold of live person after 11AM or so.
As it was the Christmas holidays, the next available appointment was January 11th at 9AM. A bit longer than we had hoped for, but oh well. Apparently since we live in the Hague we don’t need to visit city hall to register there – it is all combined with the IND appointment.
After breakfast Marco and I met up with Roger outside of the Hema, although we first went to Kruidvat (a store like CVS or Walgreens in America) and Xenos, a high end thrift store. Finally, we made a stop at Hema to pick up the Christmas tree that Marco ordered, as well as some extra Christmas ornaments and hooks.
Afterwards we went back to our place (!) to watch some random tv (wrestling and tv shows). At the end, Marco and I started to put the Christmas tree together. We mostly finished it sometime after Roger left for the night, although Marco wants to wait another night before letting me take a picture since he is a bit of a perfectionist about such things it seems. 😉