Getting my 90 day visa extension in Brazil


Too busy to write home?

Days of blog silence with everyone assuming I’m having much too much fun to bother….

But it is not so! Well, not entirely so…

There hasn’t been an update for a while because I have been struggling to get over a relapse of the flu! All this leisure time doesn’t appear to be very healthy for you…or rather me…

Not that it is unusual to fall ill in Salvador. It’s common practice to catch a cold either before or after carnival, and since I always like to do things properly, I’ve done both. 😉


Laurence and Laura leave Salvador

Meanwhile all my marina friends have moved on, abandoning me (after generously restocking my vitamin supplement cabinet) to contend with my microbes in solitary confinement. I’m on the mend but have decided to stay put while the coughing lasts!


Healthy food thanks to these girls!

Besides, I’m well looked after at Pier-Salvador. I have the marinas chefs making me a hot lunch every day, ice is on hand to cool the rampant fever and I have plenty of paperwork to catch up on. Foremost being my visa extension.

It’s supposed to be easy… and it is…. except the process took me two days to complete. I was told that all the paperwork could be completed at the airport, and so, off I went…


Micro visa extension instructions

First up the federal police, where I was handed a minuscule scrap of paper detailing a web address, a code, and a price (see photo). Do you suppose they are trying to make savings on the cost of paper?

Next stop the airports Internet access point where I filled out a form on and had it printed for an exorbitant fee… No problem, just need to visit the bank and return with the receipt to have my passport stamped anew. Except I hadn’t counted on having to contend with the hurdle of Brazilian bank clerks vigorous efficacy.

Yes that last remark is intentionally dripping with sarcasm because for two hours I sat in stunned disbelief watching a parody of slow motion that passes for client service, and makes a slumbering sloth seem excessively hyperactive! Unsurprisingly, I returned too late to the federal police and found the office closed.

One three hour nightmare sardine can and sultry armpit sniffing bus ride later I was back at Eileen with the cheerful prospect of completing the process the following morning… I’ll spare you the bothersome details!

Life as a sailing bum

Here is one for the boys at the office....

Another life ago, when I was just starting my university studies, I would disdainfully look down on the unemployed and seemingly unemployable surfer types (“wax heads” to use the colloquial term) at my local beach. “Good for nothings!, Why don’t they get a job and do something useful with their lives? Social leaches the lot of them”…

Little did I know at the time, that the condescending attitude was in fact misdirected envy. It took a decade of wage slavery for me to realise that they had had the right idea.

Spend your youth playing in the surf and sand, chase women all day, keep fit, get a decent tan and live without a care in the world.

My long haired hippie looki

I suppose most of them are now married, in debt up to their eyeballs making mortgage payments and loosing hair worrying about how to set aside enough for their children’s education. So be it, they had their care free days.

Mine start now…

So what if I’m a bit older. At least I’ve acquired enough material wealth to forego the monthy queues for unemployment benefits! I was even able to afford something more substantial than a surf board to play with.

Time to let my hair down… thankfully I still have plenty… and become exactly what I’d belittled so many years ago. An itinerant, a bum… albeit one with some means.

I guess it’s my turn to be looked upon with scorn… or unrealised envy. 😉