Update on best laid plans....
Replies: 17 - Last Post: Nov 29, 2012 3:25 PM Last Post By: aircanadasucks
Nov 27, 2012 5:30 PM
Update on best laid plans....People who post to this forum have been known to say things like - it is difficult/frustrating/teeth-gnashing/surprising/unfathomable trying to deal with Cuba, trying to understandCuba, trying to make sense of it all.
Well, people, I am here to tell you that despite all the trauma and drama of the past three months, Lázaro has actually been able to exit Cuba and come to Australia. Yes indeed. He arrived last Thursday, 22 November, three days before the visa was due to expire.
How did it happen? Firstly, he didn't give up. He went back to check on the arrival of the Letter of Invitation again and again. And the Cuban consulate here called me to say that actually the LOI had been approved in October, they just couldn't open the computer program.......
So eventually the LOI was given to him to take to immigration - on Monday 12 November. He needed to process the carta blanca by Friday 16. I sent quite a bit of 'regalo' money and the carta blanca was promised.
Friday - no internet connection between Santiago and Havana at the immigration office. Don't worry, says Lázaro, they're open on Saturday. Bear in mind that I have until Monday morning to cancel the flights. Saturday morning - no internet connection between Santiago and Havana. I sit on my bed at 3.00am Sunday morning my time, wondering why the hell I am doing this, there must be an easier way to live. Don't worry, says Lázaro, they are going to stay open until 1.00pm, many people are waiting. I won't tell you what I say in response to this.
At 04.40, Sunday morning my time, he calls to say he has his passport in his hand. Off he goes to catch the bus to Havana, off I go to take a valium.
So - from Monday night his time, 60 hours and four flights later, he turned up in Cairns on Thursday morning. Via Frankfurt on Condor and Qantas Frankfurt/Sydney/Cairns. It has been a kind of lesson in not giving up, or in other words, in Cuba there is always a way.
I want to thank everybody who sent their support to me when I had my big moan. I probably won't ever meet you but if you're ever in Cairns there's a beer waiting for you all. Mil gracias a todos.
And now the bigger adventure starts :-)
Oh, and btw, he didn't have any problems with entry into Oz, other Cubanos have been questioned closely when they arrives but Lázaro sailed through.
Edited by: sayeh
Nov 27, 2012 5:53 PM
Nov 27, 2012 6:22 PM
Nov 27, 2012 6:26 PM
Nov 27, 2012 6:30 PM
Nov 27, 2012 7:40 PM
Nov 27, 2012 7:41 PM
Nov 27, 2012 8:08 PM
Nov 27, 2012 8:22 PM
Nov 27, 2012 8:29 PM
Nov 27, 2012 8:55 PM
10Glad to hear that everything worked out in the end. I was waiting for an update, and not too surprised to see that persistence + a plane ticket with a departure date on or close to the next business day got the Cuban bureaucratic wheels moving in your direction.
Hope you've both been able to get some sleep, and enjoy your time together in Cairns.
Nov 28, 2012 3:37 AM
Nov 28, 2012 5:16 AM
12To make a Cuban feel good? we go fishing!
Thanks so much, everybody, for your good wishes. I will post all your positivity on my walls :-)
enram, that's a good series of questions. We have a small Spanish-speaking community here, mainly hispanic, including a few Cubans. After marriage Lázaro will be eligible for free English language classes, and will be able to use our public health system. He was a welder, so needs to have his qualifications recognised. If that is a hurdle, he will work in a less skilled capacity. One of my fears/worries is that the blandness of life here will pall, but we do have a lively dance scene so that will help.
Meanwhile, I'll be introducing him to broccoli. And cricket, of course.
Nov 28, 2012 10:02 AM
Nov 28, 2012 3:34 PM
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