Há uma semana
domingo, maio 23
Dubai - am I in ou out?
There were no queues. It was my lucky day. I only took a small suitcase, one of those cabin pieces, but I had lots of dangerous goods in it, so it had to be dispatched. After a couple of minutes standing in front of the check in operator, I asked:
- Is there a problem?
- Are you getting your visa on arrival?
- Yes, here is an e mail from Immigration pre approving it. and handed him the paperwork
- hummm... where is your husband?
- working. but in this paper I just gave you, you will see copies of all his documents. His visa, his residency permit, his passport, everything.
he made a call. another call. he stared at the computer and I felt my luck slipping through my fingers.
- wait a moment - he said. and went to a cubicle where the supervisor was.
I managed to wait for a little while, but then followed him.
- Is there a problem?
- You are not boarding. You don't have a visa, and you are not travelling with your husband.
- But if you check this paper in his hand, you will see I got a pre approval from immigration in Dubai.
- They are not going to let you in. Travelling alone, without a visa and with your residence coming up in less than 6 months. Just not going to happen.
I called S. that friend of mine who organized my trip, and sent me that e mail I was trying to show them, but her phone was out of area, then I panicked, and broke into tears. I cried, and cried and cried.
The check in operator took my luggage out of the carrousel and handed it back to me. Along with the letter he refused to read.
I felt humiliated. I cursed and I called Rose, who is also S's friend.. I have no clue how she managed to understand me, because I was unable to articulate any decent word,but she did and she assured me she was going to 'find S for me.
I could not stop sobbing. I called FAbio cried a lot, I almost drove him crazy.
A minute latter S called me, asked to speak with the supervisor (same I had dealt with) who immediately pointed me to a new check in booth - assuring me everything was sorted.
I am not sure what was sorted, but I knew my puffy eyes would take a long while to be back to normal.
S called me back and said it would be possible that I experienced more problems in Dubai, but she gave me a couple of numbers to use, if things were not smooth enough. The airport ground operations manager was one of them.
My stomach jumped and turned all flight. I was a wreck.
I got to Dubai, and before I reached the immigration booths, I was approached by a lady:
- Are you Inaie?
- We called your name in the aircraft and you did not identify yourself. We also called you on the airport's PA system - you also did not come to us.
I could only think. Oh, crap...what the hell now?
- Come with me, I will help you through immigration.
She filled my paperwork, went somewhere, got a signature and in a second I was ready to go through immigration. The guy looked at my paperwork and asked:
- Where is your husband?
Oh dear, here we go!
The lady replied on my behalf:
Look at the paperwork, she has a signature from general X... (whoever this guy is)
The man checked the signature, stamped my passport and all I could hear was:
- Welcome to Dubai!!
In less than 10 minutes I was out the airport... S is was my guardian angel!