Thursday, December 17, 2015

Third World Problems

And so, as I feared, I am not yet finished with the paperwork I have to get done.  Yesterday, a guy at the admissions office told me to my face that I was missing only one document, and that I could come back the next day from 9 to 3 and turn it in.  He said everything else was in order and all I needed was this one document (to be fair, I screwed up big time, since this was a basic document that I had simply left on my desktop ready to be printed, but I never did).  So I got there today and what I found when I got there was the doors closed and the following notice:

Sadly, this is not surprising.
Rough translation (the grammar isn't very good in the original): Notice: On Thursday 17 operations will be from 12:00 to 15:00.  Tomorrow, normal hours from 9:00 to 15:00.  Sorry for the inconvenience. -Admissions.
No explanations.  The staff were just AWOL and left a note.  When I got there, it was 11:50 and there were about 10 other people already there waiting.  I had a doctor appointment at 13:00, and a 45 minute bus ride to get there, but I decided to hang on in case they showed up.  Other people, who must have been there even earlier, left, and were now coming back, started to arrive.  Soon, there were a couple dozen of us waiting.  I waited until 12:10 and then left.

Fellow students who were "inconvenienced".

This is not just an instance of what happens at CUCEI on a regular basis.  This is what most of Mexico is like, especially in public institutions.  For example, often this happens at the IMSS, our Third World attempt at a National Health Service.  Only there, it's doctors who don't show up, or maybe they do but they don't have equipment or medicine.  And people run into those situations often with pressing medical conditions, and they are told to go home and come back later (nearly every Mexican who can afford private health care ignores the IMSS altogether, even though they pay for it with their taxes.  The number of Mexicans who can 'opt out' in this way is very small, and gets smaller every year, but that's a whole other essay.)  Things have been slowly getting better over the past decade or two, but we're still decades behind the great country that we could be.  And so, tomorrow I head over there again, and hopefully I can get the bureaucracy off my mind for the holidays.

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