Discovering the Power of Blogging!!!

The power of blogging © Marco Rullkoetter

I started this blog, mainly as a way to keep friends and family up-to-date with what my new life in Prague is like. It also has proved to be quite therapeutic and has helped me clarify my thinking by having to write things down in a form that others can read and understand.

From the outset, I have been very conscious that I am a public figure (albeit a minor one) and that what I post on my blog promptly appears in the public domain. Therefore, I have always tried to be accurate with my facts and distinguish clearly between what is fact, over and against what is my opinion. But I never really expected it to be read much beyond my former parishioners in Oxfordshire, UK, various family members and friends, and now increasingly by members of my Prague . . . → Read More: Discovering the Power of Blogging!!!

A 21st Century defenestration of Prague?

Temporary Residence – forever!

I blogged previously on 11th March, regarding our ongoing battle with Czech bureaucracy in seeking to obtain our residency permit with respective social security numbers from the Czech Foreign Police. Last week, more than a month after Andrea from the private registration agency had submitted all our signed & notarised forms, apostilled, translated and notarised marriage certificate, certified protocol regarding our flat etc, etc, we got an email saying that all was finally ready. Please would we attend the offices of the Foreign Police on Tuesday 12th May with our passports and health insurance cards, and our residency permit and respective social security numbers would be issued to us.

The offices of the Foreign Police open at 7.30am and we were advised to be there at that time as it would speed up proceedings. Sybille & I are not early morning people, so . . . → Read More: A 21st Century defenestration of Prague?

Update on my previous post ‘More problems with Czech Bureaucracy’

Schengen Visa – Image in public domain via Wikimedia

As I feared, Anna has suffered the same fate as Karen. Despite going in person to the Foreign Police three times this past week, accompanied by a Czech speaking friend, she has had to leave the country today. She was eventually told that her application for a work permit & residency visa, submitted in Berlin on 21st January 2009, would not be granted because she had exceeded the 90 days she was allowed to be in the Czech Republic as a tourist.

Anna sent me a text/SMS message with this information early on Wednesday afternoon. I rang her straight back and invited her to join Sybille & I for a meal at Grosetto that evening so I could learn more about her experience with the Foreign Police and also say a proper ‘Goodbye’. We had an . . . → Read More: Update on my previous post ‘More problems with Czech Bureaucracy’

More Problems with Czech Bureaucracy

Image taken from assuming fair use. Please contact me if in breach of copyright

One of the things I was warned about before accepting an invitation to become Chaplain to a continental European Anglican Church, was having to cope with a high turnover of members of the congregation. Many people come to major European cities as exchange students, visiting lecturers or on short-term contracts for international companies. Therefore, they may only worship with you for a few months and then move on. Just as you feel you have got to know them, they are leaving. The constant round of farewells I was warned, could become quite dispiriting.

To be forewarned is to be forearmed so they say. Therefore when an American couple, Tom & Myra, came to St. Clement’s for the first time on my first Sunday last September, I soon discovered that they would only be worshipping . . . → Read More: More Problems with Czech Bureaucracy

Dealing with Czech bureaucracy

Twenty years ago this year, communism came to an end in the Czech Republic following the so-called ‘Velvet Revolution’ of November 1989. In 1999, this former member of the Soviet Warsaw Pact became a member of NATO, and in 2004, a member of the EU. Yet although so many things have changed massively over the past twenty years, one thing seems to have remained completely unchanged in the Czech Republic – Czech bureaucracy.

This is something that cannot be blamed on over forty years of communist government. Apparently, it goes back much further to when this country was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Although the empire was dissolved in 1918 at the end of the First World War, it’s legacy lives on in the present-day Czech Republic over ninety years later.

One of the founding principles of the EU is the . . . → Read More: Dealing with Czech bureaucracy