One of the things I really need to do before all other things in Busan is procure an ARC (alien registration card). Without it, I can’t get a phone, or internet, or television, or a bank account, and probably I’m missing out on a lot of other things as well. So, I looked up directions to the immigration office, received a copy of all my documents from my school, and set out for success!
Little did I know this would be a more complex mission than I had planned for. I made it through one subway transfer and a walk to the immigration office on time, with no hang-ups, so step one was golden.
But, step during step two, fill out appropriate form, I realized that I did not have my current address in Korea on me. Panic! And then, an idea, and the journey to a PC room to find my address, which I had emailed somewhere, began.
So, where was a computer room? Luckily, while standing outside looking confused, someone came up and asked me if I was lost. In Korean, but then asked if I was American, in English. The nearest PC room was a ten minute walk “that way,” he assured me. Hoorah! Can do!
I made it to the PC room only to find that I had no idea how to log on to a computer. Upon much pantomiming the lady at the front desk hooked it up for me and I found my address and wrote it on the forms. Immigration conquered! Just kidding.
Back at the immigration office once more I realized I had forgotten my passport photos, which I also needed for the form. Luckily, there was a photo booth in the waiting room, so that was easily taken care of. However, when my number was finally called, I handed in my forms only to be told that I needed the ORIGINAL copy of my medical forms. Not the photocopy my school had provided. So, I left, ordered (pointed to) four fried sweet potato things at a food stand I passed, and went back home to eat and sulk.
Oh well. Tomorrow, I am conquering this ARC process for sure!