I've been in Argentina almost 3 years. Although I still experience culture shock, I think I've done a pretty decent job of adapting. I may get annoyed when I leave early in the morning to run a few simple errands and we don't get home until 5pm, but I don't let it piss me off. At the end of the day, I am a guest here. I may not agree with the rules, but they are not mine to make. I may not like the bureaucracy, but I am not so special that I alone should not have to put up with it. Those facts are usually enough to prevent me from becoming outraged or indignant by the ‘inconveniences' of living in another country.
Usually. Today I felt those emotions rising up. I diffused them by joking with my husband and our friend as I filled out the 3 pages of paperwork required for me to withdraw my own money from my own bank account. It was not a substantial withdrawal. I cringed when I answered questions like ‘where did this money come from', ‘how did you earn it', ‘ what is your monthly income', ‘why do you need this money', ‘what will you be spending it on'. I'm not used to answering those types of questions to get my own money out of my own bank account.
I didn't like any of them, but one question in particular stood out. I'm still thinking about its significance. Yes or No: These funds will not directly or indirectly support a political cause or party. The cashier pointed to it and told me to circle ‘no'.
It made me sad. The paperwork citizens have to fill out is much more in depth. As I said, I am a guest here, if I don't like it I can leave.