Tuesday, 14 March 2017

A case of mañana-itis

Three simple jobs became a test of endurance today as I was told mañana, mañana and mañana once more.  Talluah paid for her clinic visit on Friday night but they didn’t give her a receipt for some reason.  Equally confusing was that the X-ray clinic let her leave without paying.  I returned today, paid for the X-ray and through a confusing conversation I was told that I couldn’t have a receipt because the doctor wasn’t in.  I tried to explain that I didn’t need the doctor and the receptionist could just type it in her computer and print it.  Several people in the waiting room laughed at this idea.

I have troubles remembering the word for receipt and as I was miming and fumbling for it the receptionist fed me the word receta. It sounded right so I started using it.  She told me I had to come back tomorrow.  I went next door to the clinic and explained that Talluah was there on Friday and I was there to pick up the receta.  More confused looks ensued.  The receptionist picked up a pad and explained that it was a receta and what I was after was a factura.  She gave me a receipt.  I was completely confused.  Factura is the same word for a treat you buy at the bakery.

Once home and after doing some research on Google translate I learnt the following things: receta = prescription.  No wonder they laughed at the idea of me asking a receptionist to print a prescription.  Factura = bill/invoice and also a yummy treat like a Danish.

Talluah has been waiting for books from Australia for her course and found out this week that they have been held in customs since the 8th of March.  How long does it take to search a book to see if we are smuggling in dangerous goods?  Is this taking reading between the lines to a whole new level?  Today Talluah received a telegram saying that the books need to be picked up by someone with a DNI – an Argentine person with a National Identity Number.  DNIs are used for everything from signing credit card slips at the shops, purchasing from online stores within Argentina, to booking bus tickets.  We have been doing some hasty research about posting parcels to Argentina and the message from many forums is don’t do it.  The import tax and list of items that can be taxed seems to change on a regular basis.  We have a 10 kg box of winter clothes in Australia that we had planned to post over to ourselves but now we’re not so sure how to go about it.  Perhaps we could knit some warm winter clothes from spare red tape.

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