Warm and Fuzzy / Cálido y Velloso

La versión español está después de la versión inglés.

Two and a half years ago, San Geraldo and I passed the five-year mark of our lives in Spain. That meant our “temporary” residency cards were upgraded to “long duration.” We were told we had “the same rights and privileges as Spanish citizens.” With long duration residency cards, we were finally eligible for public health services. It was an exciting time quickly dampened by the passing of My Mother the Dowager Duchess less than a month later.

It took more than two years for us to get the process started at the Public Health Center. On my first “exploratory” visit, I was given forms for us to fill out. We had to get a copy of a document at City Hall and return. My eye surgeries delayed us a bit, as did San Geraldo’s lack of interest in dealing with the bureaucracy.

I finally went back to find out exactly what we needed to do next. We went together last week, took a number (as I had been instructed) and waited an hour. When we stepped up to the desk, a very nice woman informed me we needed to stand in “that line” — a mile long and just a few feet away. She said we weren’t wrong to take a number during a normal day, but they were short one staff member. San Geraldo was NOT happy. We left.

We went back Thursday of this week, verified that all staff were on hand, and took a number, waiting just 20 minutes. USA passports seem to confound all standard processes. After some yelling at the computer and a couple of phone calls we were kindly told that the representative would work on it on her own and we should simply come back (to that other desk) Friday morning and she’d have it done. Very kind of her. (EVERYONE there has been very pleasant and very professional.)

We returned Friday with some apprehension. But all was well! We are now officially covered. We’ll maintain our affordable and exceptional private insurance. But this does offer us other benefits that we’re very grateful to have. We left the health center this morning doing a happy dance. I know it sounds minor, but it’s another milestone and makes us feel even more a part of Spain. We were as excited as we had been more than 7 years ago when we received our first residency cards in Sevilla (click here).

It’s a warm and fuzzy feeling, as illustrated by the cats (mostly Dudo) in these photos.

.

Hace dos años y medio, San Geraldo y yo pasamos la marca de cinco años de nuestras vidas en España. Eso significaba que nuestras tarjetas de residencia “temporales” se actualizaron a “larga duración”. Nos dijeron que teníamos “los mismos derechos y privilegios que los ciudadanos españoles”. Con las tarjetas de residencia de larga duración, finalmente fuimos elegibles para los servicios de salud pública. Fue un momento emocionante rápidamente humedecido por el paso de Mi madre, la duquesa viuda, menos de un mes después.

Nos llevó más de dos años iniciar el proceso en el Centro de Salud Pública. En mi primera visita “exploratoria”, me dieron formularios para que los completáramos. Tuvimos que obtener una copia de un documento en el Ayuntamiento y devolverlo. Mis cirugías en los ojos nos retrasaron un poco, al igual que la falta de interés de San Geraldo en tratar con la burocracia.

Finalmente volví para averiguar exactamente qué necesitábamos hacer a continuación. Fuimos juntos la semana pasada, tomamos un número (como se me había indicado) y esperamos una hora. Cuando nos acercamos al escritorio, una mujer muy amable me informó que teníamos que pararnos en “esa línea”, una milla de largo y unos pocos pies de distancia. Ella dijo que no nos equivocamos al tomar un número durante un día normal, pero que eran pocos miembros del personal. San Geraldo NO estaba feliz. Nos fuimos.

Regresamos el viernes con cierta aprensión. ¡Pero todo estaba bien! Ahora estamos oficialmente cubiertos. Mantendremos nuestro seguro privado excepcional y asequible. Pero esto nos ofrece otros beneficios que estamos muy agradecidos de tener. Salimos del centro de salud esta mañana haciendo un baile feliz. Sé que suena menor, pero es otro hito y nos hace sentir aún más parte de España. Estábamos tan emocionados como lo habíamos estado hace más de 7 años cuando recibimos nuestras primeras tarjetas de residencia en Sevilla (haz clic aquí).

Es una sensación cálida y vellosa, como lo ilustran los gatos (en su mayoría Dudo) en estas fotos.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

26 thoughts on “Warm and Fuzzy / Cálido y Velloso”

  1. Cripes, after all that, I hope your planning to stay in Spain? And Dudo cracks me up being so close and staring right into the heating slats so close. What in hell does he see I wonder?

    1. Mistress Maddie:
      We have no intention of every leaving. This is home. Dudo finally settles and slides his front legs entirely under the space heater. He likes it hot!

    1. Jennifer:
      Our private health coverage is incredible, but it’s great to have both. AND prescriptions, which are already so cheap here compared the the US will now be hugely discounted! Jerry will pay only 10% and I’ll pay 40% (because I’m SO young).

    1. Bob:
      Dudo just got off my lap… I hear him eating, which means he’ll be back. I’m not a fan of the bureaucracy but I’m willing to face it more readily than Jerry.

  2. Good for you! I have to face the DMV in March for the first time in years. They’ve always renewed my driver’s license by mail. My “appointment” is seven days after my birthday, so expired license. Real ID crap. This put me in mind of it. I don’t suppose you could send the fur comforters over here to ease my anxiety? My dogs suck at it. Anyway, congratulations!

    1. Deedles:
      Oh, I hated the DMV! I have to finally get back to my Spanish drivers license. Written test, road test, and all! I was ready to take the written test in the spring when my eye popped out (the detached retina). I can finally pass the eye exam again, but I have to get back to studying for the written test all over again. It’s NOT easy!

    1. anne marie:
      Thanks for loving the cats, too! I could share photos every day. Our lives DO revolve around them.

  3. Congrats

    the cat reminds me of my old betta fish. She’d hover around the heater, because they loved the warmth

  4. Congratulations! That is excellent! I understand your joy and sense of accomplishment. I finally got my Belize Permanent Residency back in June two years after submitting all the required forms. What a relief it was. Before that, I had to go to Immigration once a month and stand in line to get my passport stamped with a visa to the tune of $50 a pop. Just like you and SG, we now feel like we belong. It makes traveling in and out of the country so much easier, too.

    The cluster of cat paws is so very sweet.

    1. Wilma:
      Your process for Belize is so different from ours. In general, it sounds easier… except for that monthly visit to get your passport stamped. That would have made us nuts. AND $50 a pop! Wow! Dudo and Moose adore each other and, during winter, Dudo can’t be close enough. During summer, we’ve seen him sometimes bite Moose when he tries to join him on the bed. That being said, Jerry caught Moose clamping down on Dudo’s side at 5:00 this morning. He yelled and they both ran. They were sound asleep together on the sofa three hours later.

    1. Walt the Fourth:
      It sure is. I was patting myself on the back when we left. Now it’s back to the drives license!

Share your thoughts and experiences. It's always nice to know I'm not alone.